Updated: Aug 13, 2018
Many of us are still recovering from the losses in Tuesday's Primaries experienced by much-loved candidates championing Single Payer. As we mourn, recover, and regroup, we need to remember that as much as we need politicians to pass the requisite legislation, we are, in essence, also building a movement that goes beyond electoral politics. Such a movement thrives and grows on good personal relationships, a deep understanding of the intersecting and complicated issues involved, and development of meaningful group activities designed to build support for our goals.
In a M4SPH General Meeting in Ann Arbor today (8/11/18), two medical doctors, two nurses, a social worker, three teachers, a bio-medical engineer, one professor, one clinical psychologist, two activists for the Poor People's Campaign, a former legislative aide and current student activist for NextGen, a CPA formerly with BC/BS, a M4SPH board member, and a substance abuse treatment provider shared stories about how our American health care delivery system (controlled by for-profit insurance companies) is affecting their health, as well as the well-being of the people they work with and care for. Attendees also spoke to the way this out-of-control for-profit system is fracturing our society and harming general welfare and the common good.
Additionally, the meeting featured an explanation of Rep. Yousef Rahbi's MiCare bill by his aide, Alexi Chapman; a short training in canvassing; a deep canvassing role play session; and a discussion of upcoming events (including future meetings and canvassing opportunities, fundraising, and the free screening of the film Screwed By the Big Business of American Healthcare at movie theaters around the state). Attendees left energized, and filled with a sense of mission.
Last Sunday several members of M4SPH canvassed rallies for Dr. Abdul El-Sayed. Both rallies featured guest speakers Senator Bernie Sanders, Nina Turner, and Linda Sarsour. At the Cobo Hall rally, volunteers included M4SPH & Detroit DSA members Kyle Minton, Will Toms, Maureen McInnis, and Sean Cristofori. In Ypsilanti, M4SPH board member Bill Farmer, with fellow M4SPH and Kalamazoo DSA members Cade Gillem, and Kate Denney joined M4SPH members Ashia Sonnenberg from East Lansing Clean Water Action, Sharon Devine from Michigan Resistance, Patrick Willis, and Scott Elliott. In attendance at both rallies (bringing materials from Cobo to Ypsilanti): Laurie Williams, Al DuBruck, Linda Wan, and Sam Copi.