Wednesday, August 19, 2009

A Letter to Our Representatives

So we've arrived in Southern California! The car made it! Praise God! I'm actually three days into my Seminary orientation. It's been a ton of information, but also a really enjoyable time. (Actually, at this moment, I'm on break from a three hour crash review session on English grammar, which, if you know me, is my bread and butter, my being a language teacher.)

But I still don't have internet access set up in my home, so I'm not able to get back to my regularly scheduled programming here at For Our Benefit. But I do have something that I'd like to share with you guys for the Wednesday post. It's a letter written by one of my very close friends and treasured brothers in Christ to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi regarding Barak Obama's proposed health care bill.

Now, both this friend of mine and I do not favor heavy involvement in the political process. The kingdom of God and the kingdom of this world are two separate kingdoms. We should not put our hope in the political process to effect change in the world; it will fail us. All our hope for positive change is in the transforming power of Gospel of Christ.

Having said that, there is a however. My good friend expresses that 'however' in an email he sent to other Christian friends introducing his letter. I'll let you read it from him.

So, is this post beneficial? Is it for our benefit? I believe so. I pray that you are benefited and helped by what is written. I was.

For the most part, I tend to stay away from being very involved in the political process, because I believe that since all of our lives are governed by our God then not much of our lives is of relevance to that political process. But I also do believe that we American Christians have been placed in a country that is unique. In our country, we can and are supposed to be stewards of the “practicality” of how we live. Because of this unique privilege that we have, and because our democratic leaders are being so aggressive to violate our biblical beliefs, I have felt inspired like never before to write to our representatives. However you can and however your conscience guides you to, I want to encourage you to do the same thing. I have attached to this email a copy of the letter that I have sent to our senators Menendez and Lautenberg and to our speaker of the house Pelosi.


August 11, 2009

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi
450 Golden Gate Ave.
14th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94102

Regarding: President Obama’s Health Care Bill

Dear Madame Speaker,

I am a one-and-a-half generation “Hispanic” American. I suspect that generational adjective does not exist, but I think that it fits me well. I was born in New York City in 1973, and when I was nine months’ old, my mother traveled back to Ecuador, South America taking me with her. At fifteen years of age, I traveled back to the United States by myself, not knowing how to speak any English. After six months’ worth of watching American soap operas and hundreds of infomercials, I learned to speak the language (I have a slight accent). I am 35 years’ old now, and since those days of soap opera-watching, it has been one of the greatest thrills of my life to get to know the beautiful details of our nation’s history.

And so I am writing this letter to tell you, with all due respect, but directly, that you do not have the right to force upon me and upon millions of other Americans a health care system that we do not want for ourselves. It is our right to decide whether we want to have medical coverage or not. And if we decide that we do want to be covered, it is our right to decide what kind of coverage we want. You do not have the right to determine what our needs are, because you are not the provider of our needs. We will decide, under the authority and protection of our constitution, what those needs are and will advance ourselves in whatever honest and legal way we can so that we can provide for those needs.

We Americans have been born free, and with rights. We have the right to lawfully do what we want with our money, talents, and resources. These are ours, not yours. You do not have the right to pass a piece of legislation that forces us to give a portion of our money, talents, and resources to benefit other individuals whose property these three things that I have listed are not. Each of us does not have the same intelligence, education, or moral integrity as every other American. Thus, you do not have the right to pass a piece of legislation that treats us as if we have the same make-up as every other American. Your party claims to be the philosophical offspring of that splendid man, Martin Luther King, yet your party seeks to violate that most profound of principles that he proclaimed—that any law that does not conform to the law of God is no law at all. Our rights, according to our constitution, are natural rights, given to us by God, yet you seek to violate them. And committing such violation, you proclaim yourselves to be despots and not at all men and women of virtue.

You are not representing me and millions of other Americans, yet to represent us is what your chosen profession is supposed to be. If you truly believe that your proposed plan is so beneficial, spell it out to us Americans clearly, simply, and in detail. We can listen to you if we want to, but if we decide that we do not want to be enslaved under your plan, you must respect our individual sovereignty. That you refuse to explain to us Americans the details of your plan only shows us that you are not interested in being civil servants. Civil servants are individuals who have been inspired by wonderful pragmatic ideals. So inspired, and so seeing the beauty and strength of these ideals, civil servants are careful to be articulate in presenting the benefits of those same ideals. That you refuse to explain to us the details of your plan only shows us that you are interested in dictating to us, who are free Americans, and in coercing upon us a philosophy that we do not agree with. That you refuse to explain to us the details of your plan tells us loud as thunder that you are interested only in being satisfied by power.

There is much more that I want to say to you in this letter, but it has been my intention to be as plain-spoken and thus as succinct as I believe it is necessary for me (for all Americans) to be during this absolutely crucial time in the history of our amazing nation. I have wanted to present in detail what I believe will be the unavoidable consequences (financial and moral) that your plan will cause, but an anecdote that I heard from an American radiologist two weeks ago, I hope, will be enough. The American radiologist was training together with a British one who had come to train in the US. They were giving medical care to a mentally disabled patient. The British radiologist was shocked at the dedication with which the American one was caring for the patient. “In England, we put these people in a room with open windows and hope that they catch pneumonia,” the British radiologist said.

Without any intention whatsoever to be melodramatic, but with reason and therefore passion to exercise my privilege of being a free and responsible citizen, I write to tell you that I want this America to remain and to improve. Your health plan will cause, without a doubt, neither. Forced slavery never does.

Do not violate my rights.

An American citizen.

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