Wednesday, October 18, 2006

No one ever told me life was fair

So this guy comes into the building where I work because he's sick -- but not sick enough yet to be kept in the hospital, as he has no insurance. He knows he'll be mortally ill within 48 hours, because of the pattern of his disease. He can't go home to wait it out, because he doesn't have one. We don't have a program for him at present.

We are in a big city with more resources than many other places in the U.S. I am familiar with many of these resources, so we start calling around to different places. There are alot of organizations receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal funding -- but no one would help him because he didn't have an address and couldn't be entered into their systems! IN 2006! I thought we worked some of this bureaucratic shit out in the Nineties, but apparently not.

How can an ill person with multiple hospitalizations to save their life be allowed to just fall through the pavement, like they're already a ghost? How dare we call ourselves a civilization -- let alone spend gajillions of dollars telling other people how to run their countries -- when we treat our own so poorly???

I know I sound like a childish idealist, but why is it so unreasonable to think that we should be able to provide for the most basic needs of all of our residents? The fact that one of the wealthiest nations in the world still can't house and heal it's sick citizens is too fucked up to fathom.

(On a positive note -- the guy has food and shelter for tonight, and a pretty reliable provider appointment for tomorrow. I guess it's something. It just isn't enough.)

(And on another aggravating note -- while I was google searching an image to go with this posting, I found a variety of organizations that provide Bibles and Bible study for the homeless. Hey, every little bit helps, but wouldn't it be a wiser investment of time and materials to provide the homeless with homes? Please see Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs.)


Indigobusiness said...

This is emblematic of how twisted our values and priorities have become.

It is not idealistic to think we could minimally ensure the basics of food, shelter, and health care for everyone in this country. It is eminently doable...if our resources were not squandered on the madness of military adventure, the hoarding of wealth, and the short-sightedness of class struggle.

History will one day judge America's recent choices, and view them as no less selfishly vile as those of Nero's Rome.

La Sirena said...

I'm afraid so.

Here are some depressing updates. The healthcare/ case management program I located for the gentleman mentioned in this post lost more funding this fiscal year. They can't take any new clients, because they are already working at double their case load. The kind, professional man who is my contact there was going out to the shelter and the streets to find the ill gentleman and to try and set him up with something else -- so say some prayers/ mantras/ wishes. Otherwise, I'm sure I'll be hearing from the gentleman today -- so if anyone has any ideas let me know....I'm fresh out.

Also, my boss came back from presenting at an army hospital. He was stunned by the sheer volume of permanently disabled solidiers(amputees, parapalegics, etc.) arriving literally by the boat load and jet load every single day.

And those are the wounds we can see.

I think I'm going to drink tonight.

Indigobusiness said...

The horrors are just beginning to ripple through the pool.

I think I'm going to drink lunch.

La Sirena said...

Lucky IB!

Drowning my sorrows in afternoon drinking is one of my favorite kind cruelties.

Indigobusiness said...

I ignite my sorrows.

La Sirena said...

Like a Wicker Man?