In his article, “Barack isn’t my Daddy," Erik Telford’s lack of understanding of the health care bill is significant. As if to simultaneously refute and insist upon his physiological status as an adult (the prefrontal and temporal cortices are still maturing well into one’s 20s), the 25-year-old Telford takes issue with the bill’s use of the word “child”; limits his ageist issues with the bill to those in his age group; misinterprets a passage such that he thinks the government will “force my parents” to do something they will not be forced to do; and uses a 113-year-old legislative failure as the cornerstone of this misinterpretation.
The bill uses the word “child” to reference the offspring of a parent(s). It says, to paraphrase, that insurance companies will, if the parent(s) sees fit, insure his/her child up to age 26. The “force” is on the insurance companies, not on the parents who have policies with insurance companies. Nonetheless, in Telford’s mind this is tantamount to Indiana’s unsuccessful 1897 legislative attempt to define the exact value of Pi as 3.2, even though the health care bill’s use of the word “child” is not used to define people under the age of 26 – now or in the future – as stripped of all rights and responsibilities previously enjoyed by those over the ages of 18 and 21.
The bill addresses the reality of a substantial lack. In the past it was reasonable to assume one would leave high school or college and find gainful employment that, after a period of time, would include health insurance. Such has not been the case for a significant portion of the population for several years now as more and more insurance companies have sought and found ways out of insuring those they considered to be high risk individuals; among them: those fresh from high school or college.
While no reasonable person would suggest the use of the word “child” in the bill’s context is a sneaky way of legislating that those under the age of 26 are now children in the most elementary sense of the word, Telford does. The bill also addresses the elderly by age, but Telford does not address this nor does he call Obama out for possibly redefining the elderly as, oh I don’t know, middle-aged?
The bill’s force on insurance companies (to insure those whose health and well being they previously balked at) recognizes and addresses the needs of those groups most often on the receiving end of the insurance industry’s relentless ass-poundings. That Telford mentions only those parts of the bill that he thinks screw him over is cause to believe his opinions were reached with a very limited understanding of the bill based solely on his own interests. The logic he uses to the exclusion of others and to define his supposed dilemma reminds me of so many articles out of the Middle East that talk about "the people," as if most or all of the population were being referenced, when in reality the articles are only talking adults of one gender.
If anyone is to concur that referencing the offspring of a parent as a “child” is an affront, surely then we ought to address the inequity of the Constitution wherein one is not considered adult enough to run for President until one is 35 years of age. Good on you, Telford, for knowing more about Indiana’s history than a lot of people, but there might be a dunce cap with your name on it for not using a constitutional tidbit that keeps you in the cradle for 10 more years as part of your argument that Obama is saying you’re a child for another 365 days.
To a much lesser degree there is the ageist assault on our youth by the rental car industry, as they will not rent to anyone under the age of 25. Could it be that Telford had never tried to rent a car before he turned 25 and doesn’t know they saw him as a child – or was he turned away but accepting of their discrimination?
It’s safe to say Telford’s call to arms is nothing more than an objection to anything Obama, evidenced by his limited experience with and understanding of the world. I’d like to hear what Telford has to say about 25-year-olds in 2050 when he’s 65 years old – assuming he isn’t already dead from a condition no one would treat because no one would insure him.