The Washington Post has a video of Republican Presidencial candidate Mitt Romney visiting a diner and talking to the people there. The video focuses one of the people who works there at the diner, Michele Griffin, and what she would ask Mitt Romney when he arrives.
I ask all the candidates: What are you going to do for me? My family? You know. My husband works two jobs. I just came back to work. I was disabled for two years. My hands were really bad. We had a rough time making it.
Later when Romney was talking about reaching out to other nations with our medical technology, Griffin shouted out, “Excuse me, how about our nation? How about the USA? Come on!” Romney answered her by explaining the private health care insurance plan put in place in Massachusetts while he was governor of that state. You can watch the six minute video if you like, but you should be able to understand Griffin’s point of view from what I’ve already quoted.
The thing I found very telling about Griffin’s attitude is how self-centered it is. “What are you going to do for me?” She wants to know what the federal government is going to do to take care of her and her family. But how is it the responsibility of the federal government to do so? I’ve heard people quote the Preamble of the Constitution that says, “promote the general welfare” and extract from that the concept that the federal government should take care of everyone. But notice that is says “promote” not “provide.”
It’s sad that Griffin has such high medical bills and a family that has so many medical problems. But when she says, “What are you going to do for me?” she’s not just asking that of the candidates. She is asking that of you, John and Jane Public. What are you going to do for her? More specifically, how much are you going to pull out of your wallet to take care of her problems? Because if the government pays for her medical bills, the money is coming from your wallet.
When I hear people ask the government, “what are you going to do for me?” I hear the voice of self-centered greed. And that’s not pretty. In all fairness, Griffin may not be demanding a hand-out from John and Jane Public, but I am pretty confident that she doesn’t understand that government has no money that it hasn’t first taken from someone else.