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The Torch Has Been Passed

Tribute to Two Great Senators

In all through those years since the late 1960s, the United States has evolved into a nation that ceased to learn from the lessons of the past as to what made America such a the great nation. This was the noble experiment democracy; a republic under God, one nation indivisible that our founding fathers entrusted to future generations. Sad to say that today our founding fathers would look down upon this nation and probably say "What the hell happened?" No longer are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness available to all. It's the more affluent, the wealthiest few are the only ones that benefit the most today.

Most of us now are caught in a vicious cycle of financial, emotional, physical, and cultural decline. Our elected officials now rule by way of garnishing millions of dollars just to get and stay elected. They no longer take the time, are too self-centered, and have become too aloof to focus on meaningful legislation that if passed will ensure every citizen is better off. Just once we would like to see a candidate or elected official start by having a plan of direction that would ensure how to make their constituents have a better quality of life. A plan of direction that would produce more employment opportunities with real living wages, health care coverage, and greater educational opportunities. A plan of direction that would also achieve real national security. The type of security that produces for every American a true sense of being in a country where they actually are protected from any threat of terror. Every plan of direction must include four phases: one for their direct constituency, one for the state they are elected or serve in, one for the nation that they represent, and one for the world that all of us live in.

The late Senator Edward Kennedy was probably the only elected official prior to his passing in 2009 that tried and succeeded in most of the legislation that he sponsored. He had a concise plan of direction not only for his state but for the country and the world. When President Obama signed the Affordable Health Care Act of 2010, it was only a step in the right direction for this nation. But, it did little to offset the continuing plight that over 65 million Americans still are without any healthcare coverage. Now, the question is; do we finish Senator's Kennedy's most important work? That being, establishing Universal Health Care? The torch has been passed and now it is up to Senator Bernie Sanders to finish what Ted Kennedy started.

Kennedy's legacy shouldn't be tarnished by Chappaquiddick but by the eloquence of the speeches that stirred a nation and for all the legislation that he sponsored. But, his most endeared work still lies unfinished. When Senator Sanders picked up the torch with the passing of Senator Kennedy, it was a true testament to the character of both men. For they both realized that having Universal Health Care for all Americans and a progressive agenda is vital for the stability of the nation. Through educating the population, which is key to the success, both men have dedicated their lives to.

Now, it is Senator Sanders turn to rally the nation to unite behind a progressive agenda much like what Senator Kennedy was so instrumental in doing. A Medicare for all bill is now in front of Congress and it is Senator Sanders who has made it possible for the United States to do the right thing for all Americans by proposing a Medicare for all bill. The plan, which Senator Kennedy envisioned for this nation, was going to be financed through changing our tax code to a ten percent flat tax, the elimination of Medicare and Medicaid, and shift their funding allotments toward Universal Health Care (you don't need Medicare or Medicaid when you have Universal Health Care, also there is too much duplication in the federal government and federal budget already) by passing legislation legalizing the sale of medical marijuana and putting a five percent sales tax for additional funding, eliminating the capital gains tax, (this will spur more investment and sales of real estate), and imposing a $.05 cent tax on all alcohol and tobacco products. With all these enactments implemented, they will fund Universal Health Care. We must remember it is the physicians, nurses, and caregivers that will run and operate Universal Health Care, not the government. The government is the one that funds Universal Health Care.

This is what the late Senator Kennedy was trying to accomplish. Now, the torch was passed and Senator Bernie Sanders is about to finish the work started by Ted Kennedy. It is the time to put our differences aside and support the work that Senator Sanders is trying to finish. We have to remember the United States is almost insolvent financially. Having Universal Health Care is just part of a total economic plan that will ensure the future of this nation. All of us have to realize that the fear of change or of the unknown is the greatest obstacle toward improvement. Remember that quote by President Franklin Roosevelt: "What we have to fear is fear itself." That is very apropos today. Education is the best way to rid ourselves of fear and anxiety toward changing from what we have grown accustomed to. But failing to change to where the whole country is propelled toward a brighter and more secure future only continues the economic deprivation that this nation is in today. Establishing Universal Health Care is the key to that brighter and more secure future.

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