What I’d Say to Congress and American Students
What I’d say to Congress and American students
President Barack Obama is taking a bold move this week to address both American public schools and, in prime time, a joint session of Congress. I pondered what I would say to both groups about Obamacare if I had the chance. First, I would share the information from my four most recent columns, which concerned the four dirty secrets of Obamacare. In short, I’d tell them that it is too much about prescription and not enough about prevention. I then would proceed to tell them some- thing that the president never would: The majority of Americans (including all of them) can improve their health care cover- age, improve their quality of life and live longer by simply taking better care of their own health. I’d tell them that the answer is not in big government solutions and that it’s time for government to quit enabling the majority of Americans and equip them to fight for themselves and one another. I’d tell them the truth is the No. 1 enemy of our health is not government, insurance companies or health care practitioners, but ourselves. According to the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, childhood and teen obesity in the US has tripled over the past 30 years. Twenty-five percent of kids are overweight or obese, and most parents don’t even know it. They also report that one-third of adults are overweight, with another third being obese. According to their data, those numbers have “increased sharply for both adults and children” since the 1970s. Food isn’t our only consump- tive threat. An estimated 1 in 6 adults also smokes cigarettes in the US, which leads to a host of health risks and cancers. More than 50 percent of American adults don’t exercise enough to provide any health benefits and 25 percent of adults are not active at all in their leisure time. The problems with being overweight and obese go far beyond looks. They affect our mentality’ andmobility and can lead to a number of physical diseases and ailments.According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, thoseinclude:
• Hypertension, or high blood pressure. • Osteoarthritis, which is a degeneration of cartilage and its underlying bone within a joint.
• Dyslipidemia, e.g., high total cholesterol or high levels of triglycerides. • Type 2 diabetes.
• Coronary heart disease.
• Gallbladder disease.
• Sleep apnea and respiratory problems.
• Some cancers, including endometrial, breast and colon. It’s true that genetics, environment, socio-economic status, metabolismand behavior can be contributors to these ailments. But the fact ismost Americans are overweight and obese because they eat poorly anddon’t exercise. Most of our foods are extremely high in fats, sugarsand salt. And compared with other countries, we eat much largerportions. We live to eat; most other cultures eat to live. The primaryreason obesity statistics and these subsequent illnesses are so high isthat our culture is entrenched in hedonism, which means we are allabout pleasure. We go where we feel like going. We do what we feel like doing. We watch what we feel like watching. Andwe eat what we feel like eating. And God help the soul who tells us todo otherwise. Ever really thought about that great American pre-meal question, “Whatdo you want to eat?” Ever wonder why we don’t ask prior to a restaurantselection, “What would be right to eat?” The problem is that weliterally are killing ourselves in the pleasure process. I’ve heard lots of people say that they want to retire early, but Inever have heard anyone say he wants to die early. But that is exactlywhat we’re doing. As my friend Mike Huckabee says, “We’re digging ourgraves with our knife and fork.”
I’dtell them that we’ve confused liberty for licentiousness. We thinkdoing what we feel like doing is power and freedom, when really it’sjust carrying out what our flesh craves. True freedom is being able tolook straight in the eye of what you feel like doing and do otherwise.Eating what we want isn’t liberty; that’s tyranny. Eating what is rightis freedom; that’s victory over oppression. And triumph over the tummyshould be our next battle. Fighting for a better America includesfighting for a healthier, fitter, combat-ready you. (That is why mycultural warrior book, Black Belt Patriotism, contains an entirechapter on helping you win the consumption war, not just the culturewar. Get a free chapter at www.chucknorrisnewbook.com/offers/Lastly, I would tell Congress alone one more thing about Obamacare onbehalf of the majority of Americans (including our posterity). I wouldtell them that America wants them to quit rushing every big decision,especially ones that affect one-sixth of the US economy, as this onedoes. I would remind them that what we want is a truly bipartisan groupthat is allowed an ample amount of time to work on a compromised healthcare law that would rein in out-of-control insurance companies andwouldn’t raise taxes (for anyone), regulate personal medical choices,ration health care or restrict American citizens’ freedoms in any way.What that means is they need to kill this present so-called health carelegislation and go back to the drawing board. Then I would add one more final comment. It’s not a threat. It’s acertainty. I’d conclude, “If you rush and vote in this version ofObamacare, we’ll rush and vote you out of office!” offer.php?id=CN001.)
Copyrighty 2009 Chuck Norris Distributed by Creators.com