Thursday, February 19, 2009

Me: Squeaky Wheel

Today I was checking the headlines on the New York Times website, and read about the efforts to find a new Health and Human Services Secretary, and an overwhelming urge to be heard just hit me.

So I googled: "write the president"

And what do you know? The White House has a simple, easy web form where you can send a message to the president! It's right here, go try it! Flex your civic muscles! It feels good.

I won't bore you with the text of my letter (which was a dazzling piece of political wit, naturally), but it was basically about how cancer survivors like me are essentially barred from getting health insurance unless we have an employer generous enough to provide us with it. And then once we do get insurance, it won't cover the cancer, a 'pre-existing condition' for a full year (which is a really long time when you have cancer. Trust me.) Even when we've been healthy for years. It really sucks, OK?

Yes, I know President Obama is not going to personally read my letter. But call me naive, I do believe someone will read it, and then my letter will go into some big database of public opinion, and reports will be made, and I'll be a part of the system then, not just a bystander.

In my mind, I like to picture a little workshop of elves in the basement of the White House. Receiving my letter, a happy elf walks over to a big whiteboard and adds another checkmark to the "Affordable healthcare for all = good thing" column.

Oh, get ready to work, little elves. Pandora's box is open. I am going to wallpaper that White House with letters now! Viva democracy!

3 comments:

Blue Tarp Girl said...

Good for you G! I wish more people would be more civic minded, especially when it is so darn easy!

Tina said...

Seriously Gwyneth...I have sent 9 of these already!!

jcelestelay said...

You're right - they do go into a big database of opinion. Although you probably won't get a hand-written letter from Obama, your opinion will be heard and registered. This is one of the best ways to have your opinion count! Keep sending them!