Thursday, May 22, 2008

Dreaming of Change

As I browse the internet instead of... I mean on a break from... writing a paper, I came across this disturbing piece of news on NPR.

Apparently, the psychologist who coordinates the PTSD program at the Olin E. Teague Veterans' Center in Temple, Texas has advised her staff to "to stop diagnosing veterans with PTSD to save money."

I do not believe the problem with this needs further explanation. Yet it certainly deserves further publicity and a call to action. As called for by some "higher ups" in the VA system, as well as by other noted persons such as Senator Barack Obama, an investigation has begun.

I wish I were more surprised by this. I wish I could say I am shocked to hear that our government would send hundreds of thousands of men and women to a war zone worse than any of us could ever imagine... only to have them return with psychological complications such as PTSD... and then not want to pay for the costs of their treatment upon return. Instead, we are faced with the reality that we would rather spend billions of dollars on the ongoing war itself, leaving no money for other things. For things that matter here and now. Things that could actually make a positive impact in the world instead of tearing it apart. You know - things like health care (for ALL people in need - both military and not), food and shelter and education and jobs for all people. Money that could be spent on providing the basic necessities of life we Americans take advantage of day after day, such as clean water to drink.

I guess that's my dream.
Someday, I know the kingdom will come, and it will look like ALL of God's children (and we ARE all children of God!) getting the love, nurture, and care they need. I know that I am only one person, but if the hope and vision and action of change doesn't begin somewhere, we will never see this kind of change I (we!?) dream of. So even though I'm stepping down off my soapbox for now, I'm going to keep dreaming it, keep praying about it, and keep working for it. I hope you'll do the same.

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