Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Only God Can Make A Healthcare Plan

Cal Thomas thinks that God and his minions, not the secularists, should be the ones writing healthcare reform.

The secular left claims we are evolutionary accidents who managed to crawl out of the slime and by “natural selection” stand erect and over millions of years outsmart our ancestors, the apes. If that is your belief, then you probably think health care should be rationed. Why spend lots of money to improve — or save — the life of someone who evolved from slime and has no special significance other than the “accident” of becoming human? Policies flow from such a philosophy, though the average secularist probably wouldn’t put it in such stark terms. Stark, or not, isn’t this the inevitable progression of seeing humanity as maybe complex, but nothing special?

The opposing view sees human beings as unique creations. Even Thomas Jefferson, identified by historians as a Deist who doubted the existence of a personal God, understood that if certain rights (life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness) do not come from a source beyond the reach of the state, then the state could take those rights away. Those who believe that God made us and also makes the rules about our existence and our behavior will have a completely different understanding of life’s value and our approach to affirming it until natural death.

It is between these two distinctly different worldview goal posts that the battle is taking place. Few from the “endowed rights” side are saying that a 100-year-old with an inoperable brain tumor should be given extraordinary and expensive care to keep the heart pumping, even after brain waves have gone flat. But there is a big difference between “letting go” and “snuffing out.” The unnatural progression for many on the secular left is to see such a person as a “burden.” In an age when we think we should be free of burdens — a notion that contributes to our superficiality and makes us morally obtuse — getting rid of granny might seem perfectly rational, even defensible. But by doing so, we assume an even greater burden: the role of God in deciding who gets to live and who must die. Anyone who has seen the film “Bruce Almighty” senses how difficult it is to play God.

Except that no one in their right mind is proposing rationing health care or suggesting that the government be involved in those kind of end-of-life decisions; if anything, the proposals being put forth are trying to make it easier for people to make these decisions on their own. So if he’s worried about “death panels” — something even a conservative Republican senator from Georgia dismisses as being a nutty extrapolation of a good idea — then he’d be better off talking to the insurance companies, who already exercise that power every day in hospitals across the country. And if Mr. Thomas is so deeply concerned about such choices and their cost, then certainly he and all his friends would be happy to spare no expense whatsoever to make sure that everyone — from granny right down to the little child of an immigrant who needs neo-natal care — gets it. Come on, you right-to-lifers; turn your head and cough up.

Mr. Thomas, as he is prone to do, is taking an unfounded rumor cooked up by his friends on the right and turning it into another one of his ponderous fact-free sermons which usually includes his agenda for turning America into a Christianist nation free of feminists and homos. And he sees healthcare reform without the Baby Jesus as just another way of keeping God out of the public square.

If there are no rules and no one to whom one might appeal when those rules are violated, we are on our own to set whatever rules we wish and to change them in a moment in response to opinion polls. Any appeals to a higher authority stop at the Supreme Court.

Except that there are rules, and we do our best to live by them. They’re set forth in this little thing that we like to call the United States Constitution. Do you have a problem with that?

If Mr. Thomas is truly and deeply concerned about the state stepping in and dictating such things as medical procedures and interfering with life-and-death decisions that should only be made by the family, their doctor, and perhaps, if they choose, their spiritual counselor, than he certainly must believe that also applies to something like a person’s right to make decisions when it comes to having a legal procedure such as an abortion, right? Right?

HT to Creature.