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November 1, 2012
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LETTER: It's time we take care of each other

When I was a child, the Colorado winters were hard and most people seemed poor. Mother would often send one of us to some of the local widow's homes to chop kindling, carry coal, or shovel a sidewalk and driveway. We knew that without wood and coal those homes would be freezing and no food could be cooked. And if the walks were not shoveled, how could these geriatric ladies get around in snow that came in inches and feet? We were not paid for these services because they were needs basic to human life.

Now we hear much from people who have worked hard all their lives to achieve a dream of financial wealth and physical security, whining because millions of people did not achieve as well as them and are now without health care. People like a cook or waitress who want to play by the rules and do a service to folks, but don't make much money, don't have a retirement plan beyond Social Security and who change insurance every time they change jobs. These people are not asking to take your wealth. They are saying that in this day and age health care is a need basic to human life.

We have spent billions all over the world to raise the standard of living for people who were our enemies as well as our allies. We rebuilt Europe, Japan, South Korea and the Philippines with hardly a whimper. But the level of hate and greed that has been expressed over helping fellow Americans has disgusted me deeply.

The attitude I was raised with was "we are all in this together," and "love your neighbor as yourself." In sports it was teamwork that won the day. In the Navy we were on an island that moved and all contributed to make it go. In employment it has always been collective effort that achieved goals.

Now I find there is another school of thought. That is the "dog eat dog" school, the "us and them" institute and the "I got mine" fraternity. It is likely those people will never know the satisfaction of lighting a fire on a below zero morning and seeing an old woman smile a payment of love.

If the love in all those people who have it so good can see it's way to rise above the hate and greed, maybe we can increase the standard of living for our own needy for a change, and begin to cooperate as if we ARE all in this together.

Roger Dobbs

Grand Junction

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The Post Independent Updated Nov 1, 2012 03:34PM Published Nov 1, 2012 03:33PM Copyright 2012 The Post Independent. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.