US Marijuana Party

Friday, May 06, 2005

Medication not 'funding disease'

A few weeks ago as the bill to continue funding Alabama's impoverished HIV/AIDS residents was being debated in the Senate Senator Hank Erwin made a really ignorant remark that I could not resist firing off a letter about.

I am proud to announce that the Montgomery Advertiser printed it.

Medication not 'funding disease'

I was appalled but not surprised by Sen. Hank Erwin's "quote of the day" in which he stated, "We need to send a message we cannot continue to fund a disease that comes as a result of a lifestyle choice. We need to appeal to change the lifestyle, to embrace a lifestyle that is godly and holy."

Providing medication to people with HIV/AIDS is not "funding a disease." There are a myriad of "lifestyle choices" that could cause disease. For example, if you eat fast food too often you could get high cholesterol and/or high blood pressure, which could lead to a stroke or heart attack. If you smoke cigarettes, you could get lung cancer. If you drink too much alcohol you could get cirrhosis.

And apparently if you practice Erwin's brand of religion you will wind up a mentally deranged lunatic who hates everyone who is not like you. This will cause stress, which can lead to high blood pressure and/or stroke.

So, let's cut health care funding for people who eat, smoke, drink and practice Erwin's brand of Christianity. Those are "lifestyle choices," after all, and we want to be fair to everyone.

Loretta Nall

If I stay at it long enough I might rid this state of the pervasive ignorance that keeps us perpetually ranked at #50


  • Ms. Nall --

    And here you were doing so well ...

    You were right, up to a point. Sen. Erwin's "fund a disease" comment was at the very least unclear. His references to a "Godly and holy" lifestyle were also ill-considered; while I myself am a Christian, I would be very leery of suggesting in an official capacity that anyone embrace my own way of thinking. Speaking as a private citzen is one thing; speaking as an Alabama State Senator is something else entirely.

    I also agreed with your statement that there are a multitude of lifestyle choices we all make that can -- and most likely will -- lead to a disease. Personally, I don't think the government at any level should be buying medication for people, regardless of the "lifestyle choices" they may have made. But then, I'm basically a libertarian.

    Where you lost me was with this statement:

    "And apparently if you practice Erwin's brand of religion you will wind up a mentally deranged lunatic who hates everyone who is not like you."

    "Erwin's brand of religion" is, to my knowledge, the religion of choice for most Alabamians, myself included. Of course, that doesn't automatically make it right. I would like to point out, though, that regardless of your own views on religion, by painting Sen Erwin and other evangelical Christians as "mentally deranged", you're proving yourself as intolerant as those you apparently despise.

    Do you have proof that Christianity results in mental illness? Are there scientific studies to back that up? If so, then by all means share that information; I'd love to read it. If not, then I can only assume that your attitude is driven by the same fault of which you accuse Sen. Erwin: hatred of those who aren't like you, don't think like you do, and don't believe the same things you believe.

    I'm not familiar with your website, your opinions, or you personally. I ran across this entry while googling Sen. Erwin's name, and haven't read anything else posted here. So while I can't say for sure that you're a hypocrite, I would warn you that in this post you come across that way.

    If you'd like to respond, my email address is I'm always interested in a good argument ... I mean, a rational discussion.

    Incidentally, I'm planning on running -- as an independent -- for Sen. Erwin's seat in 2006, for whatever that's worth.

    -- Chris Bloom

    By Anonymous Chris Bloom, at 9:37 PM  

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