Dear Governor Haslam:
This is my 3rd 94th letter to you.
We are tired and struggling. Perhaps I am not supposed to say that right now. I dont know. People tell us we are heroic and treat us like we are very special. It is so very nice to be treated kindly by so many people, but I dont feel very heroic or very special. We are the most ordinary of people trying so hard to cope with extraordinary circumstances. And the last 48 hours have been hard. Just hard.
We dont have your wealth or power or influence. We dont even begin to have resources like those available to you. The deck is stacked so much in your favor it is not funny. And some days it seems…..well it seems so impossible. I feel like I am with Goliath and I cant find my stones.
Maybe our advantage is we have no choice. Left to your political strategies and seeming lack of any real commitment to health care reform our life as we know it will be destroyed. This is not the first bad days. Nor will it be the last. But the simple truth is regardless of how hard I cant choose not to.
My goal in these letters has been to be civil to you. I have wanted to talk as one person to another and somehow screaming and blaming feel like I am making myself a victim and I cant do that. The truth is I often want to scream and blame. But I tell myself the real victim, in a very real way, is you. You have given up integrity for gain and rather or not you know it you are much worse for it. The real victims are the so many people fighting real and dangerous illnesses and knowing when times comes to get medical help, when their lives are on the line, that no one will be there simply because they cost too much. They are a fiscal irrelevance in a state that treats their humanity as irrelevant.
I hope tomorrow is better. But like I said it doesnt matter. Some hard things are worth doing. You may destroy our lives as we know them. Maybe you have the power. You most certainly can destroy many other lives. You can mortgage the moral integrity of this state in service of your political ambitions. But we will never be quiet.
A long time ago a friend told me a central truth….. “WE ARE PEOPLE AND THIS IS WRONG!!!! WE ARE PEOPLE AND THIS IS WRONG!!!!”
The biggest sin is not to be loud and not be heard but to be silent when someone might.