I went to my internist, Kirk, yesterday with the following short-list of symptoms that have gotten so bad that it’s hard for me to stay out of bed: general unwellness, headaches, nausea, worry, anxiety, trembling, depression, fatigue, increased pain, and severe insomnia. Such symptoms could point to numerous diseases, so he ordered blood tests.
Since I was there anyway, he gave me my monthly narcotic prescription early and said that he’s going to start filling it for 90 days, which will save me going both to him and to the pharmacy every month. I already have to go to his office four times a year for a narcotic evaluation plus I have to be available on 24-hour notice for urine screens. It really pisses me off (ha) that, after eight years on narcotics, the hoops that I have to jump through just keep getting higher thanks to America’s drug cops.
As usual, I had to wait a half hour at the pharmacy during which a skinny and jittery woman name Karen came in to pick up a prescription for tranquilizers. When the pharmacy tech said insurance wouldn’t pay for it, Karen started yelling, jerking her body, and slapping the counter. She said she was desperate, that insurance fouls her up every time she tries to fill a prescription, and that, “I know I’m psychotic, but I’m all alone, and no one knows how hard it is to be me.” She said a lot more, but because she had a speech impediment I couldn’t understand it. I wanted to help, but I didn’t know what to do, and when the right words don’t come unbidden, I remain silent for fear of making the situation worse. A pharmacist told Karen that she was scaring people and needed to calm down, yet I considered it obvious that the only person anyone had cause to fear for was Karen herself. When she finally left, she seemed near collapse and kept saying, “I’m so sorry; I’m so sorry; “I’m so sorry,” but no one responded.
I looked for her when I left the store, but she was gone. I wish I had asked her on the spot how much the goddamn drug would cost and maybe paid for it. Anyone can be broken, but if you’re broken in America, you better have money.
So what’s Trump solution? As is his custom, he contradicts himself regularly, but his longest running solution is to give everyone a woefully inadequate income tax credit that they could use to buy insurance. But what if a person has no income or only makes minimum wage (and, alas, receives no benefits) at McDonalds and therefore doesn’t owe taxes? Or what if a person can’t afford to wait until the end of the year to be reimbursed and is obliged to choose between food and insurance?
Actress and activist America Ferrera told the crowd at the D.C. Women’s March this morning, “A platform of hate and division assumed power yesterday,” and I thought she was spot on. Yesterday, another demonstrator said of Trump, “I don’t care what things he was going to offer me. He was such a soulless piece of shit that I wouldn’t have voted for him anyway.”
Exactly. Even if Trump had outlined specific solutions to specific problems (something beyond, “Believe me. I’m going to fix it. Everything is going to be great”), how can his supporters deny or minimize the significance of his pettiness, immorality, vindictiveness, megalomania, and predatory dealings with anyone from whom he wants something?
Do all of those millions of Christians who voted for Trump really believe that Jesus would have done the same? I would like to think well of Christians, yet to know that millions and millions of them claim, on the one hand, to hold love for their fellow humans beings as their chief value after love for their deity, and then, on the other, to see them turn around and vote for a man like Trump, strikes me as a case of such rank hypocrisy that I can scarcely believe what I’m seeing. Supporting Trump isn’t a choice; it’s a sickness, a depravity. It irreconcilably pits Christians against the values expressed in the Sermon on the Mount by the very man whom they claim to worship as their Savior. This election has caused me to despise with my entire being the dominant face of religion in America. All of my prior criticisms of the church are as nothing compared to the contempt I feel now.