Should the government provide Healthcare for People with Disabilities?

By Sarah Ress

July 26, 2017

A difference of opinion is common in today’s world. Life experiences often shape our views in politics, religion, and society in general. This does not, however, mean that these disagreements cannot lead to progress. George R. R. Martin once said, “Different roads sometimes lead to the same castle.” This statement is especially true in regards to the current debate over whether or not the US government should provide health-care services, such as Medicaid, for persons with disabilities.

As the conversation continues to grow, voices from various religious backgrounds and political stances are speaking up and offering their support for both sides. There are three main schools of thought, which pair surprisingly well with analogies about fish.

  • The first school of thought says that we should provide everyone with fish. In other words, the government should be responsible for funding these health services.
  • The second, are those who believe that we should teach everyone to fish so that they can be as self-sufficient as possible. Basically, they support the idea that having a funding ‘safety net’ to provide care for those who are disabled is okay, but that it should only be for those who are truly in need of help, not just because they think they are entitled to it because of a disability label.
  • The final school refuses to like fish and will not let their taste-buds be swayed. Essentially, they think that care for people with disabilities should be provided through means other than those mandated by the government.

Even though each of these three positions are constructed of people who come from various perspectives, life experiences, and religions, they all still have the same basic goal: to make sure their own voice is heard and the people in their community are given proper care, keeping in mind the fact that our resources are finite.

Even though most pieces of this nature would typically have the author’s opinion woven in, I deliberately chose not to put my own beliefs here. I want the readers to have an opportunity to take the information from this blog and use it to form their own thoughts regarding the debate over how to best provide proper community care. Mull over the questions below and feel free to put your ideas in the comments. Stay tuned for my thoughts at our community forum on August 24th from 5:30-7pm. we’d love to see you there!

Do you think that it’s possible that taking ideas from a variety of viewpoints could eventually lead us to a ‘castle’ that would be beneficial for all?

Is this what government, both at a state and federal level, should be concerned with? Lacking unlimited resources, how do we come to a compromise for what level of services are appropriate and reasonable?

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Disability Advocates of Kent County

The vision of Disability Advocates of Kent County is that each person, regardless of their abilities, has equal rights and opportunities, and that our communities are accessible and welcoming to all. Our Mission is to work alongside people with disabilities as they seek to lead self-directed lives and to advocate for accessible and welcoming communities.

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