America's health care system is neither healthy, caring, nor a system. Walter Cronkite
Patricia Player volunteers for OneCareNow.org, the California single payer health insurance initiative. I interviewed her at a street fair in El Cerrito, California where she was staffing the One Care Now booth. She didn't identify as being progressive because she doesn't like labels. She did talk about the value and importance of security and from her talk, I realized the relationship between security and caring. When people don't have health care and are feeling anxious and insecure, it causes them to become more concerned about themselves. When they feel secure, knowing they don't have to worry about having health care, it's easier for them to care about others. If progressives want to create a caring society, we need Single Payer Health Care.
I am Patricia Player, and I’m a retired teacher here in West Contra Costa. I have been living for almost 70 years in this area. When I was asked about progressive values, it sort of hit me wrong, because I like to think of values being believing strongly, and going to work for it, live by and practice. So therefore I’d like to just talk about values and leave off all the labels.
I think a value is that people feel secure – a security in being able not to have to worry if they have to going to a doctor, whether they can have vision care – all of those things, that they have somebody they know is going to be there for them. And that it isn’t going to take so much of their individual resources away to provide that. And they don’t’ have to go without eating or go without enjoying life.
Edwin: Is that a value of yours, security?
Yes. Security. And also feeling confident that you can handle whatever comes up to you. That’s a real value, and I think having good health care certainly helps people feel more confident in their life. I just feel it’s important they feel they’re going to make it, whatever comes up. They want to get up each day and participate.
Another value I have is I really think people have to give back in their community, and provide volunteer service. Once you feel confident, have good emotional, physically security, you have the time and effort to give back to the community. I think it’s important to do that.
Right, right. I think so. And I think it’s a matter of feeling that you have something to offer, and I think you’re more likely to find that if you have the confidence and security about the basic necessities – shelter, food, health care. That kind of thing.
JOAN: It sounds like you’re not just worried about yourself, but about community.
Answer: And I think that personally, I can’t be secure in this community unless I feel that everybody has their needs filled. That’s really true, and one of the big things is of course, not only having a place to stay, and to have necessary nutrition, but good health care, and it’s got to be preventative care. It can’t be just when you get sick. You have to be taken care of all of the time.
You know what? I’ve been really blessed. Because I was born to a couple that had just graduated from University of California and just settled down in Red Bluff, CA. My dad at the end of the depression in 1938, he was a great salesman and during the war years he was able to work, and so we always had enough to eat. My mother was a full-time housewife even though she was a university graduate, and I had a very secure home financially. But my mother developed an aneurism in 1941, right after the birth of my sister, so for 3 years she was at UC Med recovering from that. So we didn’t have the security of having, not being free from health care. I think that makes a difference – even though my dad provided that care for us, he was fortunate that UC Berkeley wanted to provide all that care for free, because they were experimenting on how to handle aneurysms in the brain. So she recovered from that, but I’m very aware of the fact that it’s important to have good health care, and a young couple would never have recovered if they had had to pay for that health care and not been provided by the university.
More about Security
Security is the condition of being protected against danger or loss. In the general sense, security is a concept similar to safety. The nuance between the two is an added emphasis on being protected from dangers that originate from outside. Individuals or actions that encroach upon the condition of protection are responsible for the breach of security......