Health care defense gathering mingles with annual art fair.
Activists in Michigan’s 11th congressional district spent much of the winter protesting Representative David Trott to prevent a repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). In response to Rep. Trott voting for the Republican alternative, the American Health Care Act (AHCA) over their objections, The Michigan People’s Campaign and affiliated Indivisible groups held their "Repeal and replace Dave Trott" Healthcare Rally Saturday afternoon in Booth park, deepening their resolve to provide quality care to all Americans. Participants were treated to music from Chris McKenna, who’s parody of “American Pie” includes the refrain “The day health care was fried.” Author Nancy Jones also read from her upcoming spoof on the popular “Goodnight, Moon”, a book titled "Goodbye Earth: A Children's Book for Grownups Who Persist."
Also on stage were people who benefitted directly from the ACA such as Stefanie Mezigian. She broke her back when forced to decide between a burning building and an open window. Without the ACA, Mezigian said she would have to choose between treatment and bankruptcy. “No one, young or old, should go bankrupt because they need medical care. The AHCA would do just that.”
Another of Trott’s constituents, Dr. Paul von Oeyen who works in High Risk Obstetrics at Beaumont Hospital feared for the 24 million who would lose coverage under the AHCA, including the 800 thousand in Michigan. “It really bothered me last week to see Dave Trott, along with 216 of his Congressional colleagues, celebrating at the White House after voting to take away over $800 billion in funding for health care coverage.” Dr. von Oeyen fears that many thousands will likely die prematurely in the next few years, with millions more suffering preventable complications, many leading to permanent disability.
Afterwards, organizers went among the crowds drawn to the Birmingham Art Fair nearby to tell other constituents what their representative had just done. Dressed in medical gowns and capes with their message of health care for all, they walked through the crowds while canvassers talked with fairgoers and invited them to get involved in efforts to resist the racist and incompetent Trump agenda.