Intentions still don’t equal outcomes

Here is a letter I recently sent to the Midland Daily News:

Anthony Johnson, in his recent letter, writes of his family’s inability to pay for a checkup at the doctor (“Dire need for health care reform,” May 6).  After describing his family’s situation, he urges readers to spread the word in support of the most recent health care reform.

There are several people who, by no fault of their own, find themselves in similar difficult situations.  As individuals living in American civil society, we have continuously attempted to alleviate the suffering of fellow citizens in their respective times of need. 

In Anthony Johnson’s case, the debate is not between providing aid and not providing aid, but rather, choosing the most effective method of providing aid to his family.  Health care reform is one option.  Another option seldom discussed is reducing the number of costly government interventions in the health care industry that have unintentionally undermined the voluntary efforts of charity hospitals and other charity organizations.

Regardless of where you stand on this issue, it is important to note that people on all sides of the argument have every intention of helping the poor.  The disagreements arise over the projected outcomes from various public policies.  Unfortunately for those stuck in difficult situations, several fellow Americans continue to equate intentions with outcomes.

Kurt Bouwhuis


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