Back in 2009, when the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was being debated in Congress, I was fuming with anger. How could I, a fiscal conservative, support a program that would drive down my insurance costs and cover my child’s preexisting condition? It clearly was a flawed bill that would ruin small businesses.
I nearly boiled over for eight years, and rightly so. But now that President Obama has finally left office, and the Republicans want to take away my health insurance options and increase my premiums, I just want to be upfront about something.
It was never about the taxes. It was always about the president’s Blackness. It was super related to his race. Arguably, completely and wholly tied to race, alright? And now that the president is normal again, I’d be very grateful to be able to enjoy this health insurance and all these patient protections that have saved my small business and my child’s life. So please, don’t repeal the Affordable Care Act.
I was one of the early activists within what became known as the Tea Party, sending my senator hundreds of envelopes filled with nothing but tea bags. Contrary to popular belief, the black tea bags were not to symbolize the famous Boston Tea Party protesting tea taxes from the British. Rather, my black tea bags symbolized the Blackness of our president.
Honestly, if I’d thought of it back then, I would have just sent my congressman that photo of Obama at the madrasa with the words SHARIA DEATHCARE drawn in a speech bubble. That would have been much more to the point than black tea. But hindsight is 20/20, right?
Can we just pretend that white people wrote the ACA and enjoy it? Like Elvis Presley, but with healthcare. Or can we just pretend to discover that it was always a part of our healthcare system? Like when you “discover” that you’ve always been able to check out National Treasure for free at the library. Yea. That. But with flawed but reasonably crafted insurance marketplaces.
If Republicans really want the “W,” we can scrap Obamacare for everyone else, but just not take away my insurance. That is how health insurance works, after all. Or what if we just go with a plan that provides insurance, but is just offered by somebody more trustworthy, like Bernie Sanders or Mitt Romney? Really, I’d support anything that allows me to keep my health insurance and is also spearheaded by somebody more, um, presidential.
As a side note, whoever came up with the idea of tarnishing a reasonable, middle-class solution by attaching President Obama’s name and face to it did a great job. Totally got me. But manipulating me through my deep-seated tribalism isn’t a good enough reason why my 24-year-old bartender son deserves to lose his health insurance, is it? I mean, it was probably why he became a bartender, but that’s beside the point. Isn’t it?
In conclusion, I am sorry to everybody who I hurt complaining about death panels in 2009, the website rollout in 2013, and the corporate deep state in 2016. My bad. But can’t we just keep all of these solutions now that the Black person who came up with them is gone? I “hope” so.
And yes, I still firmly believe Hillarycare would have been a disaster for the economy.
Read an interview with David Bradley Isenberg about writing this piece (as well as how he dealt with some of the interesting audience response to it) over on our Patreon page.