Breaking News Alert
The New York Times
Sun, March 21, 2010 -- 10:49 PM ET-----
House Approves Landmark Bill to Extend Health Care to Millions Congress gave final approval on Sunday to legislation that would provide medical coverage to tens of millions of uninsured Americans and remake the nation's health care system along the lines proposed by President Obama.
By a vote of 219 to 212, the House passed the bill after a day of tumultuous debate that echoed the epic struggle of the last year. The action sent the bill to President Obama, whose crusade for such legislation has been a hallmark of his presidency. Democrats hailed the votes as historic, comparable to the establishment of Medicare and Social Security and a long overdue step forward in social justice.
The merits and the significance of this bill will be argued long in to the future. People will disagree. I have to say that when history is written, I think I will have been on the right side of the issue. It sounds trite, but in a situation like this, where sides are heated and mud is being thrown, it really clears all the debris to simply ask, "What would Jesus do?" And really, there's your answer. Because for all the fear about how much money it will take from some business or CEO, do you really think that Jesus would give a damn?
This is the guy who threw the money changers out of the temple. And in a way, that is what a hospital should be..a temple. Doesn't it feel sacred in a way, with what is going on inside hospitals?..where people are acting in place of God every day to save lives. Their hands have prayers being offered on their behalf every day. And while of course, they, and everyone involved in the healthcare system, need to make a living, is that the most important thing? After bills are paid and life is comfortable, is excess justifiable in the face of the helpless going without care?
Why is it so easy for us to claim the moral high road and rush to Haiti to help those without, while we turn our backs to those without here at home? Is it because we feel like they deserve their illness?..they deserve to have a sick child or a Mother with cancer? I mean, how would Jesus treat them? Or how would Joseph Smith treat them?
I really think that it's exactly what Jesus would be doing if he were on the Earth today. When it comes down to it, it's all about money. Either you worship it, or you value the worth of a soul as the most priceless thing on this Earth. I wonder if the Civil Rights Act, or the Women's Rights Act had push back from people in the form of monetary worries. That, how on God's green earth could we integrate all the restaurants, because that would cost those restaurant owners so much money. And how could we integrate the public schools for the black kids, because we don't have enough room for them and it's going to cost the taxpayers money to build schools. Can't you just hear the arguments now?...and the justification for them almost making sense?..almost.
Then, as now, right is always right. Good is always good. And there is never a question of what Jesus would do. The money thing will work out. We can make it work. Just as the Pioneers agreed to give what they had so that no one among them would be without. Just as we covenant today, to care for those who have less than we do. We can remember that none of it is ours. It is all a gift. It all comes from a source that is far bigger than we are. And as the stewards of that gift, it is our sacred responsibility to care for the least among us..even if that means the least in spirit.
I bet they were giving high fives in heaven tonight. I know I was.