On the Saturday evening of the 10th Annual Conference For Young Women Affected By Breast Cancer, a group of participants went out for dinner.
Many of us had not met before that evening. We came from Texas, California, Massachussetts and Georgia. I was the lone Canadian. It was a truly lovely evening. The food was great and the conversation flowed - from the trivial to subjects of greater import, from the general to the intensely personal.
About half-way through dinner, the subject of health care reform was raised. I said that, as a Canadian, I couldn't understand why anyone would oppose universal health care, especially anyone who has had a life-threatening illness.
Most around the table agreed with me, while one woman stated that she was resistant to any more government interference in people's lives. I soon found myself addressing the pervading myths about our health care system and was asked whether it was true that Canadians were cut off from health care when we turn 75.
I said, "No, that's not true and we don't have death panels, either."
The conversation was very respectful and never tense (unlike many, many other debates on this issue) and soon we moved on to other subjects.
And today, I want to congratulate my American friends for ignoring the fear-mongering and taking a significant step towards greater access to health care.