Wednesday, March 22, 2006

So Sad, So Predictable

Yesterday, or maybe this morning I read this post on The Dees Diversion, which spoke about the B*shWacked Administration cutting 1.4 million dollars from a program that screens low-income women for breast and cervical cancer. First of all, as Dee points out, how does this ultimately save a dime, since these women will not get treated when the cancer is in the early stages, but will drag down costs with desparate measures offered too late, their income earning ability limited by disability which means they will need to access more special funds, which, duh effect other budget line items.

This evening I click onto Yaho* and find this. Now it is no surprise to those people with even a vaguely reasonably sized brain to figure out that a large percentage of women who used the about to be cut program are not white. It begins to feel like a conspiracy, you know? Several years ago I did a certificate program at Boston University's School of Public Health, in Maternal and Child Health. (As an aside when I came across this program I was honestly shocked at how few schools of public health had a concentration in Maternal & Child Health. Why I was shocked I don't know, I really don't. Maybe it's my idealism that doesn't seem to age even as the years rage on.) We spent a lot of time on the differences in outcomes based on race. We spent a lot of time discussing how studies often found, even after accounting for socioeconomic status, timing of diagnosis, etc, that african american women and children had worse outcomes than white women and children. Latina and asian women didn't fair too well either. Just existing in this culture of racism weakens people, that's the only explanation. Add to that the stress of sexism, classism, and possible gender issues - wow it's amazing any of us survive without major illness. As someone who believes in a powerful mind-body-spirit connection it makes total sense to me. The low level assaults, the everyday reminders of discrimination cannot be good for one's health.

I don't know what else I want to say, I have no brilliance, no compelling links (they exist I simply don't have the energy to search them out). I feel so beaten down by all the bad decisions, bad policies, the lack of compassion this nation exhibits on a daily basis. I am humbled by folks like Dee, Arse, Molly, Pam who write daily, go to demonstations, have powerful words to express their outrage. Tonight I only have exhaustion, a weight on my chest and a bed calling my name so that I can attempt some refuge by sleeping.

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