Thursday, February 17, 2011

Justin Bieber, Glenn Beck and health care


I don’t consider teenage singing idols to be authorities on the great issues of the day. Nevertheless, I feel compelled to congratulate teen heartthrob Justin Bieber for speaking his mind. In a preview of an upcoming cover story in Rolling Stone magazine, the 16-year-old from Stratford, Ontario praised Canada’s public health care system. He said, “Canada’s the best country in the world. We go to the doctor and we don’t need to worry about paying him, but here, your whole life, you’re broke because of medical bills. My bodyguard’s baby was premature, and now he has to pay for it. In Canada, if your baby’s premature, he stays in the hospital as long as he needs to, and then you go home.”

Not surprisingly, Bieber was roundly criticized by Glenn Beck of Fox News. On his radio show, Beck and co-host Pat Grey attacked and mocked the young pop singer. At one point in the show, Grey told to Bieber to “Go to Canada . . . Let’s see how many of your records they’re buying, you rotten little brat.”

How classy of you, Mr. Grey! Of course you have the right to oppose universal health care, but did you really have to resort to calling a 16-year-old “a rotten little brat” because he expressed a point of view that differs from yours?  If Justin had bashed the Canadian health system, you would have lauded him for being a smart and thoughtful young man. Since you disagree with him, he is a rotten little brat, ungrateful for the largesse that America has bestowed upon him. Who is behaving like an adolescent now?

Justin Bieber is extremely wealthy and he doesn’t have to worry about paying exorbitant health care bills. At least, he is concerned about those who do. Doesn’t that demonstrate that he has a social conscience? More Canadians should take a strong stand in the defence of universal health care.  Otherwise we may lose something we can be proud of, something that defines us as a nation.

To listen to the remarks of Glenn Beck and Pat Grey, click on the link below.

- Joanne

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