SHAUN KING: Tomorrow, Tens of Millions of Americans Will Be Kicked Off of Their Health Insurance and Be Unable to Pay Their Rent. And the Nation Has Done Virtually Nothing About It

Shaun King
Mar 31, 2020 - 11:17

Last week, 3.3 million people filed for unemployment insurance. Some experts put the total number of newly unemployed people at nearly 50 million. And for those millions of people, and their families, tomorrow, April 1st, is going to be the hardest day they’ve experienced in this pandemic so far. 

The rent is due. And while a few cities have said evictions will be stopped, so families won’t simply be put on the street, most cities and states have done no such thing. Beyond that, without the rent actually being covered, or canceled in some kind of way, it’s simply going to accrue, month after month, and ultimately amount to a mega-payment that’s going to come due. 

For those millions of newly unemployed people, and their spouses, and their children, which could ultimately put the number above 100 million people, tomorrow will mark the day when their health insurance will end. Do you understand what I’m saying? In the midst of a global pandemic, tens of millions of people are now going to be instantly uninsured. They will now be unemployed, with no income, on the brink of homelessness, and will now have no health insurance.

This crisis I am describing is one we’ve been knowing was coming at least for weeks. Somebody could argue that we’ve had months to see this coming, but let’s just say for a moment that our leaders didn’t fully understand the gravity of this situation until early March. WHY IN THE HELL HAVE THEY NOT ACTED to do something, ANYTHING, to make sure that when tomorrow comes, people will have some relief. 

Even the horrible “stimulus bill” that seems to have helped the stock market, but nothing else, has not kicked in yet for everyday people. The little checks are still weeks away from being received and it did nothing about health insurance. 

This is a complete system failure. Republicans and Democrats have failed. The House, the Senate, and the presidency have failed. Governors and state legislatures have failed. Mega-corporations have failed. 

And as I have said before, it just did not have to be this way. Other nations not only handled the coronavirus better, they handled the fallout better — providing more relief, and doing it faster. 

This much is clear to me — the United States is not the best country in the world. Stop saying that. It’s dumb. It’s propaganda. In virtually no metric, outside of being #1 in coronavirus cases and mass incarceration, is this nation #1. 

Tomorrow is going to be a very, very hard day.

33 Replies to “SHAUN KING: Tomorrow, Tens of Millions of Americans Will Be Kicked Off of Their Health Insurance and Be Unable to Pay Their Rent. And the Nation Has Done Virtually Nothing About It”

  1. This is so, so sad. I am one of the fortunate ones – I have medicare and no rent or mortgage to pay. I don’t consider myself lucky. I consider myself privileged. I had a middle class upbringing and a good education that led to a good career. And I am very grateful for those advantages, except for the gnawing realization that they are all that separates me from the millions of people living in poverty in this “land of plenty”. The system isn’t fair and it has led to massive social inequities, made more glaring and painful in this pandemic. Immediately, we need more tests and ventilators but hopefully, we will eventually have the resources we need to get through this – those of us who survive the disease. But until we tackle the real etiology of this crisis we’re in, it will happen again. We need a widespread economic and social revolution in this country on the scale of Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal. We could have had it with Bernie Sanders as President and a Democrat-controlled Congress to back him up. Short of a miracle, that isn’t going to happen. All we can do is vote for the Democratic candidate, whoever he/she is, and tell all of our fellow Bernie Bros to do the same. We just cannot allow the suffering of so many and the destruction of our planet to continue under this miserable excuse of a president Almost anyone one, except maybe a Hannibal Lector-type would be better.

  2. A national health service providing universal healthcare free at the point of use, is a basic minimum requirement for any country claiming to be civilised, claiming that its people are free. The horrible sufffering on an unimaginable scale that already occurs in America because of the health insurance racket, must end. This pandemic must be the moment Americans wake up to the insanity of their situation. It doesn’t have to be this way. Voter registration for a mass movement for universal healthcare should be everyone’s number one priority.

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