The last few elections saw Republicans attacking Obamacare, saying how awful it was and how it would ruin the economy and make people die and cause the earth to leave its orbit and careen into the sun. “It’s the worst thing to happen to America since slavery,” they actually said.
Here’s the funny thing: None of the bad stuff they predicted would happen actually happened. I know, right? Who would have thought that the Republicans had lied and exaggerated? Shocking.
The uninsured rate keeps dropping. Approval of Obamacare is at its highest. Insurance cost increases have even gone down. (Yeah, they’re still rising — they were doing that before Obamacare, you know, by huge numbers — but percentage-wise, they are not rising as fast as they were, and in some places they’ve even gone down.)
And the GOP knows this. That’s why they’ve finally stopped scheduling “repeal Obamacare” votes and why you don’t hear them talking about it any more.
I mean, it’s not like they had a real reason to be against it. Obamacare was, after all, originally a Republican plan. They liked the idea of keeping the insurance companies happy. It was called “Romneycare” at first, you know. They only opposed it because Obama supported it, because all that party knows how to do these days is to oppose anything the Democrats favor.
But that’s all in the past. Conservatives have always been against social progress, and they’ll scream and yell as they’re being dragged into the present but eventually they’ll shut up. They did the same thing with worker’s safety, minimum wage, child labor laws, racial integration, medicare, medicaid, environmental protection, voting rights, women’s rights, gay rights … (need I go on?)
Tony Auth was the Pulitzer-prize winning editorial cartoonist for the Philadelphia Inquirer. He passed away yesterday at age 72. I’ve posted his cartoons many times on this blog. Below are a few samples of some of his work … not necessarily his best, but a few recent ones that show his talent. His wit and art will be missed.
“No religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.” That’s in the United States Constitution (Article VI, paragraph 3).
The US Air Force doesn’t care. They swear an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States, and then they ignore the parts they don’t like by demanding that the oath include the words “So help me God.”
This clear violation is surely headed to court, and we’re going to hear the same arguments they always make: But this is a Christian country and the majority should rule and blah blah blah.
I’ve debated this issue with True Believers and it’s a waste of time — they never seem to accept the fact that it’s unconstitutional discrimination. Since it’s discrimination they agree with, how can it be wrong?
Imagine if they argued this:
“This is a white nation and the Founding Fathers supported slavery. The majority doesn’t want blacks in the military, so they should abide by tradition. The minority shouldn’t be allowed to dictate to the majority what the laws should be.”
“This is a straight nation and the Founding Fathers supported heterosexuality. The majority doesn’t want gays in the military, so they should abide by tradition. The minority shouldn’t be allowed to dictate to the majority what the laws should be.”
“This is a male-run nation and the Founding Fathers supported men being in charge. The majority doesn’t want women in the military, so they should abide by tradition. The minority shouldn’t be allowed to dictate to the majority what the laws should be.”
So, yeah, I’m upset whenever there is discrimination. Like the current fight for gay rights, the people who want to discriminate can’t see past their own biases to understand what is wrong with their position.
And, for the record, I would be just as upset if the military was requiring an oath that denied the existence of God. The government has no right to discriminate based on religion or lack thereof.