Letter: Sensible steps on security, health care

Aug. 19, 2013 @ 09:05 AM

To the editor:

Our president addressed several major concerns Friday, and I think he did a good job. He initiated a serious effort to look at the flaws in the Patriot Act that former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden revealed. He has a plan to rebuild America’s infrastructure that will put more Americans to work in American jobs. He challenged Congress to let us realize the benefits of health care reform before dismantling it or holding our economy hostage in order to “defund” it.

Creating the commission to examine our security and privacy addresses the legitimate concerns I have regarding my privacy. That Patriot Act was passed in haste. None save those who objected claimed they read it before voting “Yea!” We need to let this fresh and considered evaluation proceed and support the president’s effort.

Instead of threatening to shut the government down to scuttle health care, our representatives should support the president’s efforts to rebuild our aging infrastructure. In Caldwell County, 38 percent of the bridges were “Deficient” during the last inspection. Our local economy could really benefit from a federal effort to rebuild all of these and put more of our citizens to work.

They should not kill the Patient Protection Act before we have the opportunity to try it! North Carolina is about to publish some 60 plans on the health care exchange. I would like the opportunity to compare these plans and prices for myself. Based on the plans published for Maryland and Colorado, it looks as if we will finally have affordable health care insurance.

Insurers will have to offer the same basic features, cannot include “lifetime caps” or exclude me because I have a “pre-existing condition” or might get pregnant. I will be able to compare plans offered in North Carolina with those offered in other states. In addition, I will be able to purchase my insurance at group rates and learn what subsidies are available at my income level.

Congress needs to let us see the product and decide for ourselves — my doctor and I will decide my health care options, rather than Mark Meadows and Patrick McHenry!

Kathleen A. Kaminski

Lenoir