Trevor was dying. Liver disease and hepatitis C were the causes. Tennessee had not accepted the expansion of Medicaid provided for in the Affordable Care Act, and thus Trevor, a 41-year-old white Tennessean, had gone without health coverage. He strongly supported the decision of his state’s Republican officials on this matter. Had he lived a few miles away, in Kentucky—whose then-governor, a Democrat, had expanded Medicaid with an executive order—he would have been eligible for coverage and thus care that might well have saved his life.
But Trevor wouldn’t have accepted it. He “would rather die” than “support Obamacare or sign up for it.” Why? “We don’t need any more government in our lives,” Trevor answered, before fleshing out his response and fully revealing his thinking: “And in any case, no way I want my tax dollars paying for Mexicans or welfare queens.” And there you have the argument of this book in a nutshell. As the author, a physician with a Ph.D. in American Studies who currently serves as the Frederick B. Rentschler II Professor of Sociology and Psychiatry at Vanderbilt University, puts it, “Trevor voiced a literal willingness to die for his place in [the racial] hierarchy, rather than participate in a system that might put him on the same plane as immigrants or racial minorities.”
GOT THAT? Trevor’s life could have been saved by Medicaid, but, he refused it — because he didn’t want his tax dollars paying to save his life, however, that same Medicare would save “Mexicans or welfare queens.” So, Trevor died.
Read the full story here . . . and there are a lot more Trevors around.