A life lesson from Governor Bredesen and my 9-year old daughter
This morning as my daughter was eating her breakfast I sat down and apologized for my outburst. Her response was direct and to the point - "Daddy, she was doing the best she could, and you always tell me that we should give people who work hard a chance."
After my talk with with MaryKathryn, I read through emails about the Governor's speech on Cover Tennessee. In similar clarity the Governor outlined a vision of giving Tennesseans who work for small busineses and who are self-employed a chance at better health and an opportunity to share in the American dream.
In his every word I heard the echo of my own voice to my children - lecturing them on how owning something makes someone personally responsible, and on how we as citizens have a responsibility to work together to give people who are trying their best a fighting chance.
By promoting a portable plan the Governor is giving working Tennesseans ownership of their health. By promoting an affordable plan, hundreds of thousands of our fellow citizens - even total strangers like the young woman working at the restaurant on Elliston Place - can have access to basic health care services.
The Governor was smart to set boundaries on his vision - no new government entitlement program. What he proposes is more of an equally shared responsiblity between individuals, small business employers and the government.
Much will be written and debated on the finer points of the Governor's ideas, but I personally will not forget the life lesson I learned from MaryKathryn. At the end of the day, she and Governor Bredesen are right - we should put aside our selfish tendancies and do what we can to give people who deserve it a fighting chance.