Friday, October 16, 2009

In Which I'm An Activist

I had an opportunity last night to help provide a little intellectual ammunition to three acquaintances. It was fun!

Ryan had sparring at TKD last night (which is going much better, btw). I got to while away an hour in the waiting room with Morgan and the Force of Destruction otherwise known as Sean (I've taken to referring to him in my head as "The Sean-ster Monster" but shhh . . . don't tell the Big Kids!). Three other parents starting talking about healthcare reform, and what a shambles everything is.

One of the moms, who is a nurse, made a comment about how the idea of healthcare as a right is completely unfair to her as a healthcare professional. The other parents generally agreed with her, and attempted to articulate the idea a couple of times and hit near the mark, but didn't quite get all the way to the principle.

So I chimed in with, "That's right! A service which has to be provided by someone else can never be a right, because that effectively enslaves the provider simply because they have the knowledge and skills." And I illustrated the point by turning to the woman who is a nurse and claiming to be injured, demanding that she take her kids out of Taekwondo class right away so that she could treat me--since I have a "right" to it!

Everyone laughed at the obvious ridiculousness, and the other woman in the conversation brightened up with a big smile on her face and said, "That's the best way I've ever heard anyone say it! Thanks. I'm going to use that in further conversation!"

Wow. What a compliment. I was all proud of myself for being so clear. :o) And I was even wearing my Taggart Transcontinental shirt, too (although Ayn Rand didn't come up specifically).

I suspect these kinds of conversations are happening all over the place, all the time. This is how ideas are spread. Exciting!


Paul Hsieh said...

Very nice! Plus your way of formulating the idea will now stick with her. Well done!

Elisheva Hannah Levin said...

Cool! Activism happens in the strangest of places. And where did you get the TT T-shirt?

Stella Zawistowski said...

Well said! I think I'm going to have to trumpet this post on Facebook.

Lynne said...

That's a great story, Jenn. Attempting to concretize good and bad ideas in personal conversation is my favored form of activism right now.

Stella Zawistowski said...

Posting it on my Facebook page had the effect of arming an ER doctor acquaintance of mine with the words he's been looking for to describe his frustration with being an EMTALA slave. Thanks again, Jenn!

Rational Jenn said...

Thanks everyone! I think it's so important to concretize these ideas. Nobody wanted to think of a nice lady, a fellow TKD parent, as someone who is under any sort of moral obligation. That was what hit home, and she was played along with me which was helpful. Sure, I was talking to a group of "friendlys" but there were others in the waiting area, too. You never know when something you say is going to make someone think.

EHL--I got the shirt from I think. A long time ago.

Stella--that is SO AWESOME! Totally made my day. :o)