Health Care and Undocumented Immigrants

People say they’re not racist, but that’s not true. A lot of people honestly say that because they do not know what racism is. Racism, broadly defined by Webster’s dictionary is “a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race.”* More specifically, racism as defined by one of my anthropology books is “discrimination against an ethnic group assumed to have a biological basis.”** There are racist people everywhere.

It’s obvious there is a lot of racism in our country because immigration and border control is a touchy subject for many of us U.S. residents. While I support a tighter border, I do not support discrimination against any person in this country–that includes health care. There are just some things which should remain absolute rights, such as education and health. No one, for any reason, should be denied these things. I hear from the same people who want to go to Africa to provide clean water and vaccines say they do not want immigrants living here illegally receiving any sort of health care…even if they buy it. As a human race, we are all responsible or taking care of each other and the world. If our wealthy nation cannot permit undocumented immigrants to purchase their own health insurance so that they can live, then what does that say about our “Christian” nation? What does it say about our morals and beliefs? Where is the love?

I can imagine that many people who read this still do not understand how this ties into racism. Should I provide another helpful dictionary definition? Prejudice: “Devaluing (looking down on) a group because of its assumed behavior, values, capabilities, or attributes.”**  “To injure or damage by some judgment or action.”* Prejudice, as we see with those who oppose the new health care plan because it aids illegal immigrants, is the action of racism. I am sure that still doesn’t click for some people who are reading this. If that is the case, my advice is to think about it more. Really try to understand what this means and understand your actions and how they tie into your beliefs—which are likely to be subliminal. Think first before you act. Readjust if you need to.

For more info on the health care plan go to:
You can read the PDF version of the entire bill here:

* Merriam-Webster (1991).Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary. Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster Inc., Publishers.
** Kottak, Conrad Phillip (2007). Mirror for Humanity: A Concise Introduction to Cultural Anthropology. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

Comments Gone Too Far

I find a lot of disturbing things on Facebook. Either I have a lot of weird friends or people attempt to make jokes that are just not funny. I am thinking mostly about the comments said about our president, Mr. Obama when I say that there are a lot of disturbing comments going through my Facebook feed. I kid you not, people were saying during the presidential campaigns that they would move out of the country if Barak Obama is elected. They were saying that he is a socialist and actually believed former Alaskan governor Sarah Palin when she said he was “palling around with terrorists”. I’ve heard lame nicknames like “Obomber”. I got an email from a former friend saying that my support for Obama is the support of murdering millions of unborn babies. I’ve heard reports that people were trying to disprove his U.S. citizenship because he is black. I heard that people were protesting his back to school speech on the assumption that he was promoting propaganda, when in fact, he was not (read transcript for proof). I even heard that one guy during an address to Congress yelled “you lie” to our president.

Now, I don’t really get it, and I don’t think I am missing anything. I am surprised to see how serious racism still is in the U.S.—I thought we made progress! It’s OK and necessary to disagree in politics, but if you start making jabs at our president for no real reason, then that’s probably racism or sheer ignorance.

On Facebook, I commented on picture of a person’s feet facing outward toward the ocean with bars in front, asking why were the bars there. A moment later, someone replied to me saying “It’s Obama’s new prison system haha”. Confused by what this meant, I replied: “Not sure what the ‘prison system’ refers to..” (Maybe his new policy on Guantanamo?) He replied: “Neither am I. It could have been a crack at marriage and the symbol between the two things.” Wait—what? Does any of that make sense to you? So clearly, making jokes for no reason is really funny for some people. If a joke has no meaning or truth, then it’s just not funny. People, it’s time to stop making bad jokes! Comments are getting way out of hand, people are just saying things because they can—because other people don’t counter them when they’re out of line or being unprofessional.