Thursday, February 28, 2013

Flicker


Why do I give so much credence to my dreams? 
 
Deja vu  sets in.  Someone turned off the lights in my dreams.  I know this room.  I’ve been here before.  Unsteady on my feet, I walk slowly, each step more cautious than the last.  A table finds the edge of my palm as I stumble over the leg of a chair.  It’s darker now.  The shadows have disappeared.  A faint light flickers in the distance.  How to reach it?  Guided by the edge of the table I slowly lower my body as my knees reach the floor, smooth and cold.  Submitting to the darkness, at its mercy, I begin to crawl, fearful of what’s ahead.  One, two, one, two, counting the legs of the chairs I encounter as I go, eight chairs have passed, the light flickers more brightly.  One, two, one, two, one, two, at the end of the table I stand.  The lights turn on.  I see a door covered in darkness.  My left hand extends… 

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

down the rabbit hole


Naked.  Exposed.  Vulnerable to the world.  How can I hide in the light of day?  I feel myself shutting down, regressing to past negative thought processes.  How can I save me from myself? 

Thursday, February 21, 2013

The seed that sprouted Charley and Gina. [NF]


Why didn’t you protect me? 
Why do you hide behind a plastic smile?
Don’t you love me…
It’s not my fault.  Jen’s right, I didn’t not protect me.  I didn’t fail me.  It’s not my fault. 
NONE OF THIS IS MY FAULT. 
Every time you talk to her it hurts me, it kills me. 
Why can’t you see that?  Why don’t you understand? 
I don’t want to be broken.  I’m more than shattered pieces that used to make up a whole. 
What’s wrong with you; are you capable of looking and truly seeing me? 
I was 12 years old.  I was a fucking 12 year old and I needed you; I still need you. 
This marked a profound change in our relationship and I don’t know if we can ever go back. 
I’m not sure what’s worse.  Is it worse that you weren’t there for me, that you didn’t protect me, and you didn’t look after me?  Or is it worse that I know?
I really wish I didn’t know.  I wonder how life would be if I never found out that you could have protected me that to some degree you knew and you still put me in harm’s way. 
The person I trusted most in the world besides you betrayed me.  And you let it happen. 
           
Where it started
            Growing up I was extremely close with a family “friend.”  I’ll call her “Dallas.” She was always very sweet and kind.  Dallas would listen to me talk for hours.  My family often teased me for talking too much.  They wanted me to be a normal kid.  While kids my age were outside playing I was inside reading.   I loved learning about any and everything. 
            One day Dallas called on the phone and wanted to talk to me.  I was 12 years old and very na├»ve.  She started off by saying, “I need to apologize to you, please tell me you won’t hate me.”  I could never hate her; she was the only person interested in anything I ever had to say.  She showed a genuine interest in my life, my well-being.  Everything gets fuzzy here.  I remember fragments.  She continued, “I had a dream that I slept with you.  I don’t think I’m a lesbian but I had a dream that we were together.”  I was 12 years old, terrified, and confused.  My mother was seated about 5 feet from where I sat.  I wanted so desperately to ask for help.  I wanted her to grab the phone.  I can still feel the phone cord stretching across my legs.  I can see that wooden end table with green legs.  I remember that cold feeling, the chill in the air.  I feel that chill now.  It was a day like today.  I said, “No, I don’t hate you.  It’s okay, it was just a dream.”  I can remember the tremble in my voice.  We were on the phone for a few hours and I don’t know what words she said.  I remember the horror that I felt.  I remember looking at my mother and silently pleading for help.  I remember wanting to hang up the phone.  I never did. 
            At one point Dallas ended the phone call and said she’d call back.  This time my mother answered.  I watched my mother from my spot crouched by the end table.  My mom laughed and smiled.  I wondered if I’d get in trouble, I prayed that I wouldn’t have to talk to Dallas again.  I remember seeing the phone cord stretched along the couch and watching my mom play with the end.  They spoke for I’m not sure how long.  The call ended.  I was free.
            Dallas called back about 2 minutes after the call ended.  My mom pushed me to answer the phone.  I beg her to not make me.  My voice trembled as I fought back tears.  “Answer it now, I don’t want to talk to her, just say I’m busy” my mom said.  I begged, trying to look in her eyes and she watched the caller ID never looking at me.  Dallas hung up but quickly called again.  My mother lifted the receiver on the first ring and placed it next to my ear.  I spoke to Dallas for a few more hours still crouched in my corner.  Still cold, still alone.  I’m not sure exactly what was said.  I remember that feeling; being alone.  Watching my mom watch television for hours as I sat and listened; dying little by little inside. 
            I tried desperately to wipe this day from my mind.  I was 12 years old.  I would forget for certain extended periods of time and then it would flood back in a dream or something that brought me back to that place.  Like Jen said, I didn’t not protect me.  I didn't not fail me…
            At age 14 we went to Dallas’s house for Thanksgiving.  I had forgotten at that point.  Towards the end of dinner Dallas asked my mother if I could spend the night.  She was going to go shopping the next morning and wanted me to babysit her children during her shopping trip.  Everything flooded back.  I tried to make excuses. “I don’t have my contact solution and I can’t wear them [my contacts] to sleep.”  I said.  My mom said, “You’ll be fine, you’re staying.”  I spent the evening playing with Dallas’s daughter.  I’ll call her Kaylee.  Kaylee was very excited to have me over.  She was around 4 years old.  At bedtime Dallas said, “You can sleep in my bed.  My husband won’t come home tonight.  It’s a California king.” 
“I’m fine in Kaylee’s bed, thanks.”  I said. 
“Suit yourself, but my bed’s much bigger than that twin bed.”  She added. 
“I’ll be fine.” 
I went to sleep on a twin bed in Kaylee’s room.  Kaylee slept on the floor protecting me.  She stood guard between the door and the bed I slept in.  I didn't sleep.  I stared at Kaylee’s NSYNC poster all night long.  I’d drift off and get startled awake quickly.  I’d look at Kaylee, then back at the poster.  I prayed, and prayed.  God please protect me. 
The Aftermath
            This experience had a profound effect on my entire life.  It was one day, and a series of phone calls with the same person.  I was 12 years old.  I’m 27 now.  Dallas was over 15 years older than me.  To me, she’s dead. 
            On a random day I had a conversation with my aunt, my mom’s youngest sister.  My aunt told me a story about Dallas.  She said that one day Dallas called and said she had a dream that they [my aunt and Dallas] had sex.  That they had a weird conversation and Dallas called her to apologize.  I stopped her and filled in the blanks.  This was the first time I’d ever told anyone what I’d been through.  My aunt apologized for what I went through.  She said, “I’m sorry. If I had known I would have done something.  I didn’t know you spoke with her [Dallas] that day.”  Then my aunt added, “You know, your mom had the exact same conversation with her that day.  Your mom knew.  We both thought she was on drugs or something.  Why would your mom push you to answer the phone after she already knew something was wrong with Dallas?” 
            My mom knew.  My mom knew when she pushed me to answer the phone.  My mom knew that something was off with Dallas.  She knew something was off and thought nothing of Dallas calling and calling.  She thought nothing of me being on the phone for hours. 
            Dallas is still around.  I've expressed my hurt to my mother and she refuses to apologize.  Her story often changes.  At times my mom will claim she doesn't remember.  Then she’ll say she does remember but had no way of knowing that Dallas would have the same conversation with me since I was a child. 
            I have had to see Dallas at family functions.  Very rarely she’ll come around.  I found myself buried in a bottle.  I downed a few pills and chased it with a couple beers.  She touched me, hugged me and tried to go on about how much she missed me.  At the first family function I pleaded with my mother to not invite her but I was quickly put in my place.  After that day my mom said, “See it’s not so bad, she kept hugging you and you were okay.”  I screamed, “Did you see how much I drank?  I took double my dose of Xanax and kept downing beers.  I had to be that drunk to get through that.” 
            My mom and I don’t talk about it now.  It hurts that she still invites Dallas around.  Recently my mom invited me to a family dinner.  I couldn't make it.  Dallas was there.  I’m really happy I didn't go.  I’m really not sure what I’ll do if and when I see her again. 
The Important Part
Like Jen said, I didn’t not protect me.  I didn’t fail me.  I'm not broken.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Torn:Nonsensical Family Drama

I've been in touch with my aunt Syl recently. She invited me to go to lunch on Saturday. I'd love to see her but I'm not sure how that will go over with my extended family, especially my mother. The family I have three aunts and three uncles on my mother's side. All my uncles are divorced. The most recent of which being my uncle that was married to my aunt Syl. My entire family turned their backs on her and now no one communicates with her at all. To me, they divorced each other and I had nothing to do with it, so why should I avoid her. She's always been a role model to me. She embodies the type of wife and mother I hope to be someday. I don't anticipate that to be anywhere in the near future but when the time comes I hope I can take on her good qualities. If someday I can be half the mother she is my kids will be doing pretty good. I could never have this conversation with anyone in my family. I love my mom and I know she always does the best she can. I've learned a lot from my mom and learned from many of her mistakes. I'm not saying my aunt Syl is perfect by any means, she wouldn't say that herself, but she's an amazing and consistent mother. I've never had an open line of communication with my own mom and I wonder if its too late for that now. I hope my mom doesn't feel betrayed if I meet my aunt for lunch.

Sunday in the emergency room...

This weekend I found myself in the emergency room for over ten hours. I woke up with a high fever and chills around 2:00 am Sunday morning. I tried to sleep it off, and sleep I did. No such luck, I awoke feeling worse. I planned on driving myself to the hospital earlier but at this point I can barely stand. I'm much too dizzy and lightheaded to drive. The real dilemma. Who do I call?!?! Its strange, my mother can be told the same story regarding three separate people and her response tends to always be different. For example if one of my uncles becomes ill she always encourages them to go to the doctor and in the past would volunteer my services to make them an appointment. She on occasion has even pushed them to go to the hospital because of her deep concern for their health. Now take the same circumstances, doesn't really matter what they are, but substitute my brother or myself as the sick person. In regards to my brother, she'll baby him and urge him to take some over the counter medication but rarely if ever take him to the doctor. Where I'm concerned, I'm left to my own devices. I do have a natural flair for the dramatic in everything. Perhaps this is why most my family holds the same opinion of me. Regardless of the situation they tend to believe I must be exaggerating. I like to think I can highlight problems in such a way that people have to pay attention. I'm going off topic. My point being that my mother will, pardon the cliche, pull out all the stops for everyone but where I'm concerned she expects me to handle it. That's fine, I'm used to handling things on my own. As a result of this I'm reluctant to ask for help when I need it and when I do ask for help I'm usually met with resistance. The phone call I decided to call my step-dad and ask him to take me to the hospital. I knew he wouldn't want to but I also knew he wouldn't say no. I expressed my frustrations to him about my mother and how she prioritizes things. He asked if I told her about how I was feeling and I told him no. He told her about my trip to the hospital and that I had also asked if they would allow my brother to pick me up once I'd been seen. They agreed. My family was having a party for my cousin's birthday so all were occupied with that. ER visit I was there for hours and I did receive treatment. I was dehydrated with a viral something causing my fever. They gave me meds to treat the abdominal cramps, nausea and pain. I drank tons of pedialyte at home and this helped me feel 80% better by the next day. Rest and fluids helped most of all. The next day My mother calls to ask how I'm feeling. She asks in detail about the ER visit. She states that she wants to be sure she doesn't have to come see me. Color me confused. This is very unlike my mother. She doesn't like to be bothered with anything. Ever. I don't know what to make of it. Even if I was feeling ill I wouldn't ask her to drop by because I know it would be more of an annoyance to her than anything. I've spent most of my life serving my mother and trying to minimize the many annoyances in her life. Maybe I should give her more credit but in the 27 years I've been alive its always been exactly the same thing.

Friday, February 15, 2013

hurting

i don't know why. i'm fully aware of the limits. i know the difference between real and not real. still i hurt. still my eyes well up, but i stop the tears from falling. i don't know why i'm hurting, feeling a loss of something that was never mine, something i never had. crushed, alone. i'll be sad for today, maybe even cry, then move on tomorrow.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Sending my best. An excerpt from an email to a friend.

This creative writing class was and is exactly what I need. The constant flow of ideas as dialogue dances in my mind and the possibility in its infinite nature circles me, never leaving, never slowing, I'm soaring with the urge to let it fly, just let go and let it fly... I hope you're life is at least half as amazing as mine is right at this moment because if it is then I know you're happy and you have everything you want or need. I am so happy I have a laptop and I can let my ideas flow but I want a typewriter so I have to let go of the urge to revise before my thoughts are out on paper. Creating splendor in everything I do, luscious, wondrous splendor...

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Sort of Poet...an excerpt from an email to a friend.

I think I've mentioned it but I went to an open mic nite by my school before. Only walked in once. Tonight I went and stayed the entire time. I also shared, which was lovely. :) I enjoyed the kind eyes. It was a great feeling being around fellow writers. I also had a meeting with my english professor from last semester. He encouraged me to keep writing. He also mentioned that while I'm more inclined to write fiction I should consider exploring "creative nonfiction." He said I have a "talent" for that and it does well in Great Britain. But he did mention it has yet to catch on in the states. I wish you could have been there. I'm happy that I was okay in front of strangers but it would be nice to share that experience with someone I know. My creative writing professor said that its a lonely, depressing life, that of a writer. I disagree because hope is often needed to write. I'm so happy now. Its very strange to say, but I am. I'm writing and that's my dream, I'm living my dream...wow. I'm living my dream.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

First do no harm


12 December 2012
First Do No Harm: Universal Healthcare is a Human Right
            The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that “all human beings are born equal in dignity and rights (Article 1).”  When discussing the topic of human rights many things come to mind.  For example, all humans have the right to life, the freedom to believe as they choose as long as they don’t infringe on the human rights of others, and the right to a fair trial.  All human beings also have the right to comprehensive healthcare. In the United States there is currently no form of universal healthcare.  It is estimated that over 45 million Americans don’t have health insurance and of those 18,000 die each year due to lack of health insurance (Furman 2).  Medicare and Medicaid is there to help out the elderly, disabled and the poverty-stricken but there is currently no program in place to help all Americans that fall in between.  Americans that work but don’t qualify for health insurance through their employers often don’t have alternative ways to get health insurance.  As a result many of them go without proper healthcare.  Denying someone healthcare because of their lack of health insurance is a violation of their right to life, an inherent human right.   The Universal Declaration of Human Rights also states, “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control (Article 25, Section1).”  In this essay I will explore universal healthcare and give supporting reasons why it is a human right. 
In recent years I’ve become increasingly interested in universal healthcare.  I’ve always thought that comprehensive healthcare should be available to all.  I saw the Michael Moore movie Sicko and was fascinated by the health coverage received in other countries.  The movie clearly has a biased view but I enjoyed it as a piece of entertainment and a great topic of conversation.  My personal view on universal healthcare is very biased as well.  I’m 27 years old, female, single, and uninsured.  I also have Multiple Sclerosis (MS).  MS is an autoimmune disease that attacks the brain and central nervous system.  I do have a vested interest in the United States developing some form of universal healthcare and I would benefit greatly if it did.  Having said that, I’m of the opinion that all Americans, insured and uninsured, would greatly benefit from universal healthcare.  We should all have a vested interest in seeing universal healthcare in the United States becoming reality.  A nation is only as good as its citizens.  The United States would prosper as a country with healthy citizens. We are all affected when American citizens are drowning in debt or dying because of lack of health coverage.  There are a lot more urgent matters sick Americans need to concern themselves with other than medical bills.  There are more important things a sick person should think about than how they will pay their bills.
             In my pursuit of comprehensive healthcare I researched the National Health Service (NHS) in Great Britain.  To me, the NHS is a perfect model of how all countries should format their health care systems.  All Americans have the right to comprehensive health care.  By that I mean that every American should be covered by a government provided health care policy and all treatment deemed medically necessary should be covered. 
            During my research I came upon an article entitled, “A case study in healthcare hell.”  This told the story of Jovan Rodriguez.  He never had health insurance in his life.  He was employed, healthy and never concerned by his lack of health coverage.  One day he found a lump in his neck that doubled in size over a few days.  He decided to go to the doctor and check it out to ease his mother’s concerns.  A few tests and a few thousand dollars later he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma.  Rodriguez applied for Medicare to cover his treatment.  He then had to apply for disability to qualify for Medicare.  Rodriguez wasn’t sick enough to receive help from the state.  According to the rules in his state, Rodriguez needed to require hospice care to qualify for Medicare.  His oncologist wrote him a letter stating this because if Rodriguez didn’t receive the treatment he needed he’d soon need hospice care.  He was quickly approved for Medicare and his prognosis improved.  Unfortunately he no longer qualified for Medicare since his health was improving.  Rodriguez was actively dying without health coverage.  His human right to life was being violated every time he was denied Medicare.  His mother accrued thousands of dollars in medical bills while trying to keep her son alive. 
            Caleb Medley has a similar story.  He is a victim of circumstance.  Medley is another uninsured American.  He was shot at the opening night of the movie The Dark Knight Rises.  Medley required numerous surgeries and is currently in a comatose state.  His family now has over $2 million dollars in medical debt.  They’ve started a charity online accepting donations to help cover Medley’s medical bills.  His family should be concerned with Medley’s recovery but the bills keep adding up for his treatment.  All of Medley’s treatment would have been covered under a system like the National Health Service. 
            On December 22, 2009 I was given a tentative diagnosis of MS.  From there I was sent to a neurologist to confirm the diagnosis.  At this time I was insured.  My insurance company took 6 weeks to approve a second MRI.  During that time I hoped and prayed that I didn’t have MS.  After the second MRI my diagnosis was confirmed and I was put on a drug to suppress my immune system.  My insurance took another 6 weeks to approve the medication.  I saw my neurologist every three to four months to gauge the progression of my disease.  With MS, the goal is to slow it down as much as possible.  Every MRI I had over two years had been worse than the last.  The progression of MS is tracked by lesions (white spots) seen on MRI’s.  I was getting about three new lesions every three to four months.  At times I wouldn’t get any new lesions but my old lesions were inflamed.  I experienced symptoms like parestethsia, vertigo, facial numbness, and cognitive impairment.  My doctor kept insisting we wait and see if the medicine would work.  I was placed on IV steroids to control the symptoms as my disease progressed.  After two years of treatment my doctor agreed that the medication wasn’t working but said he didn’t know how to treat me.  He first did some blood tests and discovered my body developed antibodies to my current medication.  There are six medications that can treat MS and since I developed those antibodies that meant that I couldn’t take four of those six medications.  I was left with two options.  The first medication was too risky for me because of my medical history so I decided on the second, but at this time I no longer had health insurance.  I was paying cash for my neurological visits.  The new medication cost $4000 per month so I’d have to apply for assistance from the drug company to receive the treatment.  (This medication cost $4 per pill in Canada.)  By this time I had quit working and was applying for Social Security and Medicaid to help with my healthcare.  I went back and forth to both and received no help.  During this period I was also seeking a second opinion from a new doctor.  Luckily the clinic where this doctor practices medicine is a not-for-profit.  It took a few months but I was able to be seen.  This doctor spent three hours with me reviewing the progression of my disease and said plainly, “Your MS is very aggressive and if you don’t get ahead of it you’ll be in a wheelchair before your 30th birthday.”  I remained on the new drug I had been prescribed by the previous doctor.  I am no longer burdened by the cost of medical bills.  I do need to navigate the red tape of the clinic but I receive the treatment I need regardless.  This clinic has to treat those that live locally regardless of their ability to pay but many aren’t so fortunate to live near such a place.  I still need other healthcare that I’m unable to receive due to lack of health insurance.  My medication is very risky and I need blood tests every three months to test my liver function.  These tests cost upwards of $400 and there is no charity that can assist me with this cost.  I also need to get a few heart exams that I’ve been unable to afford.  The heart test ranges from $600 to $1000.  I’m taking a huge gamble by continuing my medication without the heart test.  Many people have quite literally dropped dead while on this medication.  At the moment the benefits of this medication outweigh the risks. But it’s frustrating that I’m unable to receive the heart test I require because I can’t afford to pay for it.  Under ACA I will be able to purchase healthcare in the future.  Currently I cannot buy any form of health insurance because I have a pre-existing condition.
There is very little opposition to the idea that all Americans should receive medically necessary healthcare.  No one person would say that it’s better to let someone die than to provide them with the healthcare that they need to live.  The argument comes about when we start talking dollars and cents.  No one wants to pay the bill.  Many young Americans believe it would be unfair for them to be taxed to pay for the healthcare of the older generations.  There is also a strong opposition to the concept of socialized medicine.  In America we are taught to fear socialism.  I recall learning about different types of governments in elementary school.  I was quickly branded an outcast when I asked why capitalism was better than socialism.  As a child I thought that socialism sounded “pretty cool,” but my classmates went on the attack and listed the long list of reasons as to why socialism was bad. 
I was told things like, “The government takes all your money if its socialist” and “If you live in a socialist country like England you’ll have to wait two years to see a doctor if you get sick.”  Statements like this set me straight and taught me the evils of socialism.  Clearly my classmates and I were ignorant to the issues at hand.  My classmates were expressing the extreme views that had been presented to them by their parents.  The public at large often responds in a similar manner when approached with an idea that is new and different from the status quo.  The best way to combat ignorance is with education.  The American public will be more supportive of a universal healthcare system the more they are educated about how a universal healthcare system would benefit the country. 
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has caused controversy in many states.  This act is commonly known as Obamacare.  There is fear that Obamacare is a form of socialized healthcare.  Under Obamacare all citizens are required to pay for their own private health insurance or pay a penalty.  Obamacare also extends the time that adult children can be covered under their parents’ health insurance policies.  Most importantly insurance companies will not be able to deny coverage to people due to pre-existing conditions under Obamacare.  The pre-existing condition clause goes into effect in 2013.  Under this law Rodriguez and Medley will be able to purchase health insurance.  Medley’s family will be able to buy a policy to cover his medical care. 
            The ACA does a lot to improve healthcare in America but it’s not enough.  Alternatives to universal healthcare are discussed in an article in the New York Times by Uwe E. Reinhardt.  Reinhardt discusses the fallacies he sees in the ACA.  He sees the penalty that will be charged to Americans that don’t purchase health insurance as a tax.  Also it will be more cost effective for many Americans to pay the penalty rather than purchase a health insurance policy.  Many view paying for the health coverage of the less fortunate as unfair.  Reinhardt offers a few alternatives.  First he sees implementing insurance like the NHS where everyone is taxed accordingly as a solution.  Many fear this option because it would be a form of socialized medicine.   He also offers the option of a sort of hybrid program to please all.  Under this program citizens can choose to purchase private insurance or opt for government health insurance.  Those that opt for government coverage will be taxed to pay their share but they’ll also have the comfort of knowing they’ll be covered should they need the health coverage.  The people that choose the private option will not be taxed for the health coverage of the many but they also will be unable to take advantage of what it offers.  Those under the private option will also have to pay their medical bills.  This would be a fair option since so many in the United States fear socialized medicine.  American citizens would have their right to life placed in their own hands under this option and therefore their human rights wouldn’t be violated. 
            I have given three separate examples of extreme cases where people’s lives, myself included, have been adversely affected by not having healthcare.  That is just a small window into a much larger problem.  Many everyday Americans are affected daily by the lack of health insurance.  The cost of healthcare keeps many lower middle class Americans from receiving the healthcare they need.  Should American citizens suffer in illness or die because of their inability to pay for health insurance.  Some will say that they aren’t responsible for the healthcare of others and shouldn’t be taxed for such a thing.  The important thing about universal healthcare is that it is for all.  Should there be universal healthcare?  Before answering this question ask yourself these three questions. Would I want my mother treated if she became ill and was unable to pay?  Would I want someone to help me if I was diagnosed with cancer and couldn’t pay?  And lastly, would I want someone to help me if my child contracted some illness?  If you answered yes to any of these questions then your answer is yes there should be universal healthcare.   A nation is judged by how it cares for its citizens.  We should be proud as Americans and we should want to be known for taking care of our citizens. I believe this quote sums up the current state of healthcare in the US and as a nation we should want to change it. Russell Brand, the comedian, said this when comparing the differences of Great Britain and the US.  "Instead of truck, we say lorry, instead of elevator we say lift, and instead of letting people die in the street we have free healthcare."




Works Cited
Clemmitt, Marcia. "Assessing the new Health Care Law: Will it Improve care and reduce spending?." CQ Researcher. Version Volume 22, Issue 33. N.p., 21 Sept. 2012. Web. 6 Nov. 2012. <library.cqpress.com/cqresearcher/document.php?id=cqresrre2012092100&PHPSESSID=pcpe44v9ack8s32usjmrmjt187>.
Furman, Jason. Who has the cure?: Hamilton Project ideas on health care. Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution Press, 2008. Print.
Lopez, Steve . "A case study in healthcare hell - Los Angeles Times." Featured Articles From The Los Angeles Times. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2012. <http://articles.latimes.com/2010/may/12/local/la-me-lopezcolumn-20100512>.
Reinhardt, Uwe E.. "Health Care: Solidarity vs. Rugged Individualism - NYTimes.com." The Economy and the Economics of Everyday Life - Economix Blog - NYTimes.com. NY Times, 29 June 2012. Web. 12 Nov. 2012. <http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/29/health-care-solidarity-vs-rugged-individualism/>.
"Socialist Health Association - Promoting health and well-being through the application of socialist principles." Socialist Health Association - Promoting health and well-being through the application of socialist principles. Published by His Majesty's Stationary Office, n.d. Web. 10 Nov. 2012. <http://www.sochealth.co.uk/>.
"The Universal Declaration of Human Rights." Welcome to the United Nations: It's Your World. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Dec. 2012. <http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/index.shtml>.
Varvel, Gary. "CONSERVATIVE TEA PARTY CALIFORNIA-STYLE: HEALTH CARE ISSUES / ACTIVIST COMMMENTARY AND ARTICLE FROM MEDSCAPE - 'DOCTORS FED UP WITH OBAMA.....MASSIVE MARCH PLANNED OCTOBER 10TH 2009." CONSERVATIVE TEA PARTY CALIFORNIA-STYLE. N.p., n.d. Web. 11 Dec. 2012. <http://www.conservativeteapartycaliforniastyle.com/2009/09/health-care-issues-activist-commmentary.html>.
telegraph. "MTV VMA: Russell Brand jokes about US healthcare system - Telegraph." Telegraph.co.uk - Telegraph online, Daily Telegraph, Sunday Telegraph - Telegraph. N.p., 14 Sept. 2009. Web. 11 Dec. 2012. <http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/music/music-news/6186130/MTV-VMA-Russell-Brand-jokes-about-US-healthcare-system.html>.