Letter to the editor: What IS wrong with the Republican Party?

Timothy McLaughlin

In response to Robert Thomas Young’s column “What is wrong with the Republican Party?”

Throughout the course of American history, the transition process between presidents has not always been smooth. This upcoming election is going to be no different. Sure, some say that four years is not enough time to make a statement and to actually do something. I say four years is just enough time to be able to make a change before the country goes into a irrecoverable spiral downward.

In Robert Young’s article “What is wrong with the Republican Party?” he more or less is saying that Republicans are a bunch of heartless beings who just want to sit around and watch people suffer. This was particularly articulate in his rant about the comments that Congressman Ron Paul made at the Republican debate last Monday. When asked about an uninsured man who was in a coma, Paul answered that “that’s what freedom is all about, taking your own risks.”

Well, it is! I should have the liberty to decide where and what I want to spend my money on. If I weigh the cost benefits to having insurance vs. not having insurance and decide to not pay for it, I need to be responsible for the possible consequences.

On the contrary, when I am obligated to pay an extra X amount of dollars in taxes every year in order to help those people that are uninsured, where is the freedom in that? That is the government controlling how I spend my own hard-earned money!

Paul’s following idea that instead of the government, churches and charities could take over and provide for this man in need was immediately called a “delusion” by Young. Let me remind you that the social security and welfare systems have only been in place since the 1940s. That is a lot of years of American history before these programs were implemented.

So what happened before these systems? Were there just no sick people? Nobody got caught off guard by an accident at work or a sudden case of pneumonia? Obviously not. Either people had their insurance that helped pay for it, or charities and churches stepped up and helped take care of their needs.

At what point do we take responsibility for ourselves and our fellow citizens and stop foolishly relying on the government to do it for us? At what point do we willingly, out of the kindness of our heart, donate money to charities again that help people like that 30-year-old stuck in a coma? At what point do we make the government stop stealing extra money from us against our will to pay for Frank’s surgery or Sue’s broken arm because they didn’t want to pay for insurance?

The time is now. It is time for the government to let us keep our hard-earned money and let us spend it how we want to spend it. If you are honestly concerned about Frank being able to pay for his surgery, then you would be willing to help pay out of your pocket. We get the same product of Frank being taken care of, but we have the freedom to decide whether to help support Frank or if I feel called to help out Sue instead.

Just because we may be getting rid of government-mandated welfare systems doesn’t mean we are being cruel and don’t care about the well-being of our neighbors. It is simply implying that the responsibility should not be on the federal government, but on us to take care of our own people and in whatever way we choose. So I propose the question; what IS wrong with the Republican Party?

Timothy McLaughlin is a sophomore Computer Information Systems major.