Thursday, March 23, 2017

As Day Goes On, William J. Barber's Prophetic Moral Testimony about Trump-Ryan Take Health Care Away Death Bill

Reverend William J. Barber II speaking yesterday at a protest of the Trumpcare legislation — by way of Charles Pierce

We must begin to say, no more. When all of this is done, thousands of people of all colors will die. These are not souls whom we as clergy can stand over and say, "The Lord called them home." These will be people who have died because of government policy, and policy violence. They are poor and elderly, sisters and brothers. Mr. Trump's and Mr. Ryan's Take Health Care Away Death Bill is immoral and it is sin. And we need to start using that language, as this debate about healthcare and the value of the lives of everyone is raging in our society.

And then he said to one of Mr. Ryan's aides,

We're ministers, and preachers, and rabbis, and we wrote him to meet with him. This is not a game for us. This is not an exercise in futility. People will die. We want to look him in the eye. We want to hold him accountable to the Scriptures. He claims to be a Christian. We know that the number one thing for Christians is healing, to care for others. This legislation is sin. It's immoral. My daughter could die. To think that, if she misses a payment, she could have to pay a penalty to a greedy and sick business society in order to keep her insurance, and she's been sick since she was a year-and-a-half, I need to see … him.

From very early in Christian history, iconography has summed up the significance of Jesus' life and ministry by depictions of him healing: this example from the 4th century is from the catacombs of Ss. Marcellinus and Peter in Rome.

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