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Letter to the editor: Public option is the best choice for all
Gibran Mancus
Guest Writer

I do not understand some people's complete mistrust of the government. We have fire, police and sanitation which are government run. We have schools that are government run, one of which Mr. Matt Iberg is currently a student. We, you and I and everyone else in this nation are the government, Mr. Iberg.

I want to start by identifying myself as a supporter of a single payer system. I believe this is the best care model. I would rather have Washington “bureaucrats” deciding the outcome of my care than “corporate” insurance companies. The first reason is the government officials answer to me as they require my vote to stay in office, whereas the corporate executives answer to the majority stockholders.  Secondly the government is required to follow best practices using scientific research, and corporations are required to follow the stock market.

I believe that fear is Mr. Iberg’s major motivation. The challenge is how we respond to fear and if we are able to adapt to change.  I believe Mr. Iberg is afraid someday in the future he will not get the care he or his family needs. I honor his fear. The problem is right now there are people not getting the care that they need right now. Just because Mr. Iberg had an extra $20 to go to the doctor does not mean that families, especially those with children, are able to make the choice between groceries and health care.

According to the National Coalition on Health Care, 46 million people of the USA do not have health insurance and by some estimates an additional seven million will lose it in the next two years.  I realize that a single payer system will most likely not make it into the final bill that will come across President Obama’s desk. President Obama and I differ on this point as he has publicly stated that he does not believe a single payer system to be the best option, and he is backing the public option. I honor our difference of opinion as I honor Mr. Iberg’s opinion. That is how this country works. We find a balance by seeking the middle ground. President Obama has found the middle ground with a public option. The balance between a single payer and a purely private system is having a public option.

I really wanted to go point by point in debating Mr. Iberg’s editorial but that would have taken up the whole paper. In the mean time I am contacting our state representatives on a regular basis and encouraging them to include a public option in the final draft of the bill. I encourage Mr. Iberg as well as my fellow students to educate themselves and contact Senators Ben Nelson and Mike Johanns as well as their prospective representatives and participate in this democratic process. I also want to invite Mr. Iberg to a public debate on the public option.

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