On March 21, 2018 at approximately 9:30pm I was in a terrible car wreck that broke my leg. I also ended up losing my job because I couldn’t walk and lost my car in the wreck.
As of May 3, six weeks and a day since the accident, I have moved on to phase two of my recovery and can slowly start putting weight on my foot. Fun fact about my accident though is that it was the same day I got approved for Medi-Cal.
For those who do not know Medi-Cal is the state of California’s program for Medicare, or state funded healthcare. Since my accident I have only been mobile because of a four wheeled scooter to prop up my leg, but staircases and even just an inch of concrete ledge have not been my friend for the last month and a half.
As a socialist I believe in fighting ablism both in policy and society, I also firmly believe in universal healthcare. Since my accident I feel that I must take the fight for Medicare for All more seriously. I have always supported this idea, but with the accident and the almost miraculous fact I received Medicare the morning before my car spun out I see now the importance of making this change. Anything can happen at any moment which could debilitate you and total change the direction of your life and health, no one should live in fear of what might happen in an episode of bad health.
But Medicare for All is more than that to me now. It is also about making sure that our healthcare for all rhetoric is not just making it so that people can see a doctor whenever they need to. We need to make sure that our elderly and disabled comrades are provided with caregivers and that those who may have physical disabilities can still contribute there mental abilities. We need to see to it that everything from the smallest coffee shop to the busiest sidewalk is safe for wheelchairs, walkers, and the blind mans cane. Don’t get me started on the problems with getting Ubers or public transport either. There is much more we need to do to fight for accessibility, what may seem trivial to some could be the thing that makes someone feel humanized for the first time, even something as simple as starting to put subtitles in movie theaters for the deaf or installing better cross walks for the blind.
Healthcare for all, is not just about medicare but an end to ableism as well. That is what the Medicare for All fight means to me. I know this is not some eloquent editorial about organizing theory or Leninism, it is just the ramblings of a comrade who is lucky to be alive.
Yes, I have other priorities to, ones personal and ones related to the DSA, but my Dear Reader I must say that losing my ability to walk for so long and the three screws I now carry in my ankle have shown me that we can’t be all talk about supporting Medicare for All, we need to be organizing to win. That is why I am going to go all in on the Democratic Socialists of America’s campaign for Medicare-For-All, because the DSA organizes to win. Yet we cannot just win the ability to see doctors, we need to win for the right of some of our comrades to exists and have the means to exist.