Posted on 7 May 2017 by Michael Dahl

I’m feeling vulnerable.

With the US House passage of a new healthcare bill, I’m feeling vulnerable. I know I’m not the only one. From the invective showing up on US Representatives’ Facebook feeds, it’s easy to surmise that millions of Americans are very afraid, very angry, and very vulnerable.

Packaged as a “healthcare bill,” Trumpcare is actually a huge tax break for the rich along with an erosion of things health insurance companies must cover while inflating the cost of coverage for many.

I don’t know how to speak health insurance-speak, so I’m not going to try and get technical here. I just know that people with pre-existing conditions ought to feel vulnerable. A job loss, a change in insurance by your employer (or what that insurer offers), or if you’re already amongst the unemployed or elderly could mean you will be paying dearly to maintain your health … and perhaps even your life.

Alabama congressman, Mo Brooks, recently made a fool of himself by telling CNN’s Jake Tapper, “People who lead good lives” don’t have preexisting conditions.

My pre-existing conditions are (at a minimum) Anxiety, Depression, high blood pressure, and kidney stones. The kidney stones are, perhaps, the only thing I could have done something to avoid. But I lead a pretty good (trying to be healthy) life. I exercise, I eat well — I eat my fruits and veggies; I eat almost no prepackaged foods; I don’t go out to eat much; I don’t add salt to my foods — and I’ve lost more than 25% of my once borderline obese body weight.  (I also, thankfully, have a good job with great benefits.)

I am not to blame for my Anxiety, Depression, or hypertension. Each runs in my family, and — regarding the Anxiety and Depression — as I’ve noted before, I had a tough childhood along with a few serious knocks to my noggin when I was a kid.

Shame on you, Rep. Brooks!

Another dense US Representative (Rep. Raúl R. Labrador (R-Idaho)) recently said in a town hall meeting that “Nobody dies because they don’t have access to health care.”

I’ve never considered suicide. But I need to be honest. As with many who suffer from Anxiety and Depression, it is very common for a medication that works today to fail you in the future. During that time falling into the depths of my mood disorders could take me to a place I’ve never been to before.

When I’m forced to think about that, it obviously scares me. Now — because of the changes to health potential insurance — it scares me even more. What if I spiraled to the depths of Anxiety and Depression with no insurance? Again, just being honest here.

Shame on you, Rep. Labrador!

To conclude, I’d like to lop on some shame to Minnesota’s GOP Representatives Paulsen, Emmer, and Lewis. To be honest, I expected Emmer and Lewis to support the current version of Trumpcare. But Representative Paulsen, you are supposed to a be a moderate. My wife and I have decided we are going to significantly contribute to whomever your Democratic opponent is. You have brought shame upon yourself and potential misery upon your constituents.