GJ protesters stand against universal health care system

When Kelly Sloan hears the United States is eyeing legislation to nationalize health care, he can only think of the troubles he had with that kind of system while living in Canada until nearly three years ago.

Sloan’s father had to wait five months to receive an MRI after it was suspected he had cancer, he said, and his wife waited six months for an ultrasound to inspect her gallbladder for gallstones.

“She was in pain the whole time,” said Sloan, who rallied against a proposal for universal health care with about 100 others Wednesday outside Grand Junction television station KJCT, an ABC network affiliate located at 8 Foresight Circle.

With local residents taking time off during lunch breaks, a group organized by the Western Slope

Conservative Alliance protested the decision by ABC to broadcast President Barack Obama’s proposal for universal health care. The group said it was protesting the network, not the local TV station.

“We can’t afford trillions of dollars in national debt,” said Dennis White, referring to what he feels the reform would cost taxpayers. “There’s a lot of fear and frustration of what a national health care plan would bring. We chose (to protest) here and now because health care legislation is in debate.”

Under Obama’s plan, the government would provide insurance and determine how much to reimburse doctors and care providers for services. Republicans have said this will be the death of private health care-insurance companies, and the proposed changes do not allow for competition, which they deem healthy.

President Obama has said the nation’s $2.5 trillion in health-care spending is ruining families and will continue to become a burden on the economy. A system overhaul should extend coverage to the 50 million Americans currently without insurance and lower health care costs,
Obama has said. Reform has been estimated at $1.5 trillion. 

A Grand Junction man named Richard, who protested Wednesday with his three children, said he took the day off from work to attend the rally. Richard, who did not want to give his last name, said the proposed changes are socialist in nature. He carried an American flag, and his children touted signs decked with handwritten quotations from Abraham Lincoln.

One sign read: “Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another.”

“Any event toward socialism will ruin our system,” he said. “Whatever the government gets its hands on, it fails. I work for the government. I know.”


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