Open Letter To Speaker Ryan

(Promoted by Colorado Pols)

Dear Speaker Ryan,

I was dismayed to learn that you have blocked calls to your office. As Speaker of the House, and third in line to the presidency, you have a responsibility to all Americans to listen to their voices and represent them. I don’t live in your district, but I am an American.

Yes, I know that some Americans believe that abortion should be illegal. I’d like to remind you that when it was illegal, there were still abortions. What Roe V. Wade did was make abortions safe for the women who choose to have them. I believe that abortions should be rare, and safe.

Defunding Planned Parenthood is a political witch hunt, and will do nothing to stop abortions. First, it is a very small part of their business, which already cannot be paid for with taxpayer money. Second, lots of poor people use it to get tested for STDs, to get information about birth control. It is folly to deny people access to that information, especially if you want fewer abortions. The more informed citizens are about avoiding pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases, the healthier our nation is. A bonus is fewer abortions because there are fewer unwanted pregnancies.

Likewise repealing the ACA is folly unless you have something with which to replace it.

My friend has insurance only because he was forced to get it because of the ACA. It turns out he needed it badly. He had undiagnosed diabetes that resulted in a sore on his foot developing gas gangrene. You may want to look that up. I had no idea that there were different kinds of gangrene until he was diagnosed. Gas gangrene is often fatal because it is so aggressive. His leg was amputated below the knee, and now he is waiting for the wound to heal enough to be fitted for a prosthesis. Are you seriously willing to pull the leg out from under this man who has worked in orchards, potato warehouses, and on gas pipelines his whole life? He won’t be able to do any work without two legs.

Now, my story. My employers paid into insurance companies from the time I was 18 until I lost my job in 2008. The company I worked for at the time had to reinvent itself because of the disaster in financial markets. I had religiously paid the maximum allowed into deferred payment plans and health savings plans for many years. Having no job at the age of 60 caused me to dip into those deferred payment plans for my living expenses. I paid penalties and a 30% tax rate for doing so, and the funds were rapidly depleted. The health savings plan was wiped out when, at the age of 62, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. It only covered the initial surgery, none of the chemotherapy or radiation therapy. I became a charity patient, after being an executive in the finance world.

My point is that without the safety net of Social Security and Medicare, I would not be alive today. Please think about someone other than corporate executives when you look at the problems with health care in America. Americans deserve access to health care more than corporate executives deserve multi-million dollar paychecks. That’s my belief. It may not be yours, but there are more people like me in America than there are people like you.


Claudette J Konola

About Ckonola

Retired banker, community and economic developer. Born in Deadwood, but raised in Colorado.

36 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. The realist says:

    Excellent, Claudette.


  2. mamajama55 says:

    Any response? I know, dream on. I can't beleive this corporate congresscritter has the blatant arrogance to cut off calls from his constituents. It sort of explains why all of his mailboxes have been "full and taking no messages" the past few days.

    He must figure he doesn't need voters – or that we're too stupid and forgetful to remember this crap in 2020. But we will…

    And meanwhile, I'm still looking for an election lawyer with "tits and balls" enough to make Colorado the first state to recall a Federal official.


    • Powerful Pear says:

      Maybe you should look for a lawyer who has one or the other. Election lawyers with tits and balls has to be an extremely. extremely small sub group.

      Judging from how the Pols communicate, no one would want that VM. 

      • mamajama55 says:

        It's a metaphor for courage, you moron.

        • Powerful Pear says:

          One can never tell when Democrats talk of sexual orientation.

          • Curmudgeon says:

            What does sexual orientation have to do with anything?

            • Voyageur says:

              Well, it's important if you want on Ru Paul's Drag race.

              • Curmudgeon says:

                Dressing in drag is not a sexual orientation.  You know that, right?


                • Voyageur says:

                  Of course not, it's a manly thing to do!

                  • Curmudgeon says:

                    Oh, you're one of those, "I can tell someone's gay just by looking at them" fellas, are you?  Kind of a lame mutant power, if you ask me. 

                    • Voyageur says:

                      I don't know how to break this to you, soody, but a woman, trans or otherwise, who dresses like a woman is not in drag.

                    • Voyageur says:

                      deleted duplicate

                    • Voyageur says:

                      just by looking at them, no, but listening to their extensive Barbara Streisand collection does improve your odds quite a bitsmiley

                    • Curmudgeon says:

                      Streisand? Really? Is it 1992 again?

                      You need to update your bigoted references, pal.  

                      Also, its been my experience that people who are overly concerned with determining who’s gay and who’s not based on their own criteria usually have….”issues” of their own.

                  • Pseudonymous says:

                    Yes.  Thank god no real man would dress like that.

                    Transgender ex-Navy SEAL lives in 'gray world

                    After years spent fighting in some of the world's worst wars, former U.S. Navy SEAL Kristin Beck says she knows what she wants.

                    "I want to have my life," she told CNN's "AC360."

                    "I fought for 20 years for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I want some happiness."

                    Beck recently came out as transgender.

                    • Voyageur says:

                      I don't know how to tell you sued, but a woman, trans or otherwise, who dresses like a woman is not in drag.   Kind of by definition,

                    • Voyageur says:

                      curmy, tell me more about your "experiences."   I'M SURE they are fascinating.  

                      Oh, he’s a lumberjack and he’s OK…

                    • mamajama55 says:

                      Did I start this by referring to "tits and balls" as a metaphor for courage?

                      I have genuine specimens of the former, metaphorical items of the latter. Since balls=cojones=bravery sometimes if you're talking about a brave woman, you say she has "tits and balls".

                      Which compliment I have received, on more than one occasion.

                      Honestly, I'm so naive I hadn't even considered it as a description for a trans person. Perhaps it's time to retire that particular compliment. Too confusing in these times.

                      Claudette, I’m really sorry for hijacking your thread. Fine letter.

                    • Curmudgeon says:

                      Sorry, Voyageur, I con't think I could provide you any of the content you're so fervently hoping for, and any suspicions you might have about my own orientations are most likely wishful thinking at best. I'm pretty sure there are plenty of places on the internet where you could find what you're sniffing around for. 

                      What's with this obsession you have with other men's sexuality, anyway?

                    • Pseudonymous says:

                      Mama's right.  I apologize for not looking at the diary before posting.  Bad on me.  So sorry.


  3. Negev says:

    While I agree with every single word of this letter, as the resident single issue voter/concern troll I feel compelled to bring to the writers attention that this argument of "defunding Planned Parenthood will not stop abortions" is glaringly reminiscent of the "restricting gun rights will not stop murder" argument of the right a few years back, and based on the response from the left on that issue one could easily conclude that this letter has fallen on deaf ears….

    But don’t be surprised if you get a response somewhere along the lines of “if we can save just one life it’s worth it”

  4. Voyageur says:

    To recall a federal official, a lawyer needs tits (which men do have, albeit nonfunctional) and his own private constitution.  Maybe negev will write you one with  first amendment guaranteeing recall, a second on you know what, and nothing else.

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