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Sunday, June 24, 2007

"Christianized Medicine"

Controversial documentary filmmaker is publicizing "Sicko," his new movie about health care in the United States. During his appearance on the daytime talk show "The View," Moore commented that because Jesus taught us to take care of the widows, orphans, and needy among us, perhaps we should start referring to universal health care ("socialized medicine") as "Christianized medicine."

It seems like a lot of believers I know are against public health care. I think that it's a shame that people living in the United States (working people, at that!) can't afford to go to the doctor when they're sick. I find it odd that believers who don't have a problem lobbying for the government to ban the things they're against (homosexual marriage, abortion) would be opposed to government doing something that Christians should be in favor of (paying for the care of sick people).


Strider said...

Stepchild, I am so sorry that you didn't get the memo but you can not be conservative and still say anything positive about Michael Moore or universal health care. It just isn't what Jesus would do.
Seriously though I do understand the basic philosophy of the Republican Party which says that govenment is incompetent and should not be trusted to do anything. Where we as Christians fail miserably- and Michael pointed out so well- is that we are capable of building multi-kabillion dollar facilities so that second rate worship bands can pump out third rate music to the masses but we can not seem to find the time or money to help the sick ourselves. The attitude of most today is 'Hey, I will gladly take your son to soccer practice in my $60,000 SUV but sorry to hear about your father who just lost his home because he had to pay for his open heart surgery. I'll be praying for you brother!'

Debbie Kaufman said...

I am not generally a Michael Moore fan or advocate but I am with him on this one. Sometimes it takes a Michael Moore to show the truth on things. Our health care is a disgrace. We are the United States for crying out loud and yet we have the health care system that we do. Shame on us. I worked in the health care field for several years and I didn't have insurance. I couldn't afford it. That is sad.

Brandon said...

I think the problem you identify--Christians not caring to fund healthcare solutions--is a valid one. However, having lived in the UK and France, I for one can say with great enthusiasm that the solution is not a government controlled system. If it were, I don't think that "medical tourism" (prepackaged deals to fly to countries such as India, have surgery, and recover in facilities there) would be a growing industry sector. If the church neglects its responsibility, I don't think Christians necessarily need to turn to government to fill in the gap, but rather should work to reform the church and see that it fulfills its responsibilities.

I think the other thing we often fall into, with this topic specifically, is the idea that we have a right to health care. Certainly it is something that we enjoy in developed society, but I don't see grounds for feeling as though we are entitled to health care.

jeff w. said...

There was an interesting report out a week ago or so about how Mississippi has had a sudden increase in the infant mortality rate. The report talked about how the state made Medicaid more difficult to receive. The infant mortality rate for African-Americans was about twice what it was for whites. That does not sound like "pro-life" to me.

Lyndon Johnson had a great quote about government which I wish I could fully remember. He talked about how government cannot fix all problems, but there are some issues that only government can fix. I believe healthcare is one of those issues that only the government can fix.

BTW, I spent a year in Africa teaching with a young man from
Belgium. He was going home to a place where his health insurance cost him about $50 a month. He was very pleased with the healthcare system.

stepchild said...

Good thoughts, all.

Brandon, you mention that you're not a fan of a government-controlled system. But aren't some government controls good? Like the ones that require doctors to have educations and licenses and insurance? I get what you're saying, though. Heaven forbid that my congressman be the guy who decides whether or not I can get bypass surgery.

Also, I think you're right- a lot of people seem to think that they are owed medical care. The entitlement attitude is bad news. But if the Bible says that Christians ought to love lost people, do lost people have the right to expect love from Christians?

Yeah, I never really thought I'd be quoting Michael Moore either. Maybe Strider's right about my backslide into political liberalism!

I'm pretty sure the church would mess up health care just as bad as the government would. I would prefer that doctors make medical decisions, and that they be free to do so without concern for cost.

shorty said...

I just have a quick question for Brandon. I agree with you in theory, that we shouldn't look to government to fill the needs that should be met by the church. But practically speaking, it doesn't work. You see, there is a large majority of people (in the US) that say they believe in, and live the Christian life, but in reality aren't really living out what they say they believe. Their actions don't match their words.

So, how long do we wait for the reformation of the church to take place so that they are actually taking care of the widows, orphans, and physically sick, and what do we do in the mean time?