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Casey Anthony 2.0

By Dr. Mona Mangat

Casey Anthony is now the most hated person in America? She’s the woman found not guilty of murdering her young daughter, in Orlando. Whether she did it or not is now irrelevant. I am just amazed at the amount of disgust, anger, and hatred she has been able to elicit from Americans.

Do you think if enough Americans paid attention, they’d be disgusted and angered by what else is happening here in Florida?

In the past several month our illustrious Governor and the Florida legislature has refused nearly $54 million dollars that would have helped our sickest and neediest. This money was to be used to help transition elderly Floridians from nursing facilities back to their homes. Some of the money would have been used to help low income seniors afford prescription drugs and pay their Medicare premiums. Other monies from a government grant would have allowed expansion of two community health centers. More money was to be used towards programs promoting wellness, and dealing with chronic disease management. Money was also refused that would have gone to reimburse providers for hospice care for children – dying children.

Our state also refused $2 million in grants to help monitor health insurance premium increases and to set up a state based exchange.

These shenanigans in Tallahassee are nothing but political posturing. In thumbing their noses at the Affordable Care Act and President Obama and making a point of returning any monies related to the ACA, people are dying.

I recognize that Florida’s budget is in a dismal state: it’s expected to reach $3 billion shortfall this year. I also recognize that hard decisions need to be made. I just can’t imagine that corporations need a tax break (dropping corporate income tax rates from 5% to 3.3% over 2 years) while terminally ill children can’t get hospice services. I can’t believe that Floridians would choose a $1.4 billion reduction in property taxes at the expense of seniors being unable to afford their prescription drugs.

Just because the poor, the sick, the disabled, and children are the ones carrying the burden of our budgetary problems, it doesn’t mean we are oblivious to their needs. Those of us paying attention must speak for those without a voice.

Where is the common sense? Where is the compassion? Where is the outrage?

Is anyone listening? 

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