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The Small Freedom
by Seana Sperling
Monday Aug 26th, 2019 1:06 PM
We talk about protecting our freedom, however we suffer from a lack of freedom in this country. Healthcare, education and housing have all become out of reach for some living in the U.S.
There is a lot of talk about how free we are in the United States, but who is really free in the new millennium? We have school shootings. Parents, students and teachers are on edge after these tragedies occur. We have a ravenous healthcare machine that engorges itself on family incomes. We have many people working multiple jobs to make all the ends meet. We have students buried in loan-debt, private-for-profit prisons, escalating housing costs and some of us get stopped at the U.S. border for no good reason. There are only a select few who can call themselves truly free and they are among the wealthiest in the country.

Corporations (which have been ruled as citizens) are free. They are free from many of the same taxes and regulations that human citizens must follow. What freedoms do average people actually enjoy?

How free is education? Higher Education has become very profit-motivated. When I was a university student in the late 1980’s, 12 credits a semester was approximately $800.00 and I was eligible for a grant and scholarships. Now tuition for 11-16 credits at the same university is approximately $3800. Housing costs have also quadrupled, both in dormitories and the rental market. Also, the burden of student debt weighs down many current students. I know people who are middle-aged and some who are retired that are still paying down student debt.

Student debt is like a cage. I remember when my ex-boyfriend had student debt. He had to sacrifice so much because he had to make that payment every month. He couldn’t travel or take time off work. He couldn’t save for anything, because he just wasn’t making enough money. Well, enough about education. Who needs it, right?

How free is our healthcare? Anyone who doesn’t have health insurance cannot freely go to any doctor they choose without staring down a huge bill. Sure, there are a few clinics, but most are sliding-scale-fee clinics and very few people that go to them will leave without some kind of bill.

How free is our Healthcare in comparison with our neighbors to the North? Canada has a single-payer healthcare system, which does not bankrupt its’ poor citizenry.

How about our neighbors to the South? According to, Dr. Hernandez at:

“A recent study reported that a single day in a hospital in the U.S. costs around $1,514.00 while according to the World Health Organization the healthcare costs in Mexico are less than $120.00.” So, we are free to pay much higher healthcare rates than our neighbors to the North and South.

I thought freedom in the U.S. consisted of: “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” How can you possibly pursue happiness, when your room and board is out of proportion with your earnings? What if you are bankrupted because of some tragedy or serious illness?

How free are you if your neighbor can anonymously call into TIPS and report you for any number of things without you ever knowing? You are free from knowing the accusation against you. I’m talking about watch-lists, which became popular after the Patriot Act was established in 2001. I’m so free. I’ve been stopped at the Canadian border and detained by the U.S. Border Patrol (2007). The allegation? Who knows? The FOIA didn’t work for me, so I’m still wondering.

Currently, there are troops and miles of concertina wire on our southern border. The space between Tijuana and San Diego are looking more like Check Point Charlie everyday. With all the gaslighting from Rightwing Media, one might assume the troops are keeping out criminals. The people coming in look like refugees to me.

Leni Reifenstahl made propaganda films for Hitler, showing happy detainees at the camps. We are seeing history repeating itself with the footage of model facilities being circulated on mainstream media. Look at alternative news sources to see the reality of the camps. Some have died in these camps.

The concentration of the world’s wealth into a few hands has made us, the people of the world, less powerful. Also, the buy-ups of housing, public lands, etc. have turned basic rights to housing, education, healthcare, etc. into investments. Investors don’t consider people, but only profit margins. They want to keep us tired and poor. If we are too busy to protest their actions, they can do what they want.

The very wealthy are seeing the disappearing resources brought on by man-made climate change. They have their media sources to deny that there is a problem, but the very wealthy know exactly what is going on. We are not free from their manipulation of the media, which in turn manipulates us to do what they want.

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