Nurses Stand Up to Politicians

by , posted on Sunday, May 20th, 2012 at 8:40 pm

He was a shirtless man walking around the crowd of demonstrators holding up a sign that read: “Since you politicians are going to f&#k me, you could at least wear a condom.

That’s 99% effective.” The young man said he was angry politicians have slanted healthcare legislation in the direction of the 1% and left the average person out of the equation.

While there was understandable frustration like this expressed by some at the rally, most of the signs were directed toward solutions. One read, “Heal America. Tax Wall Street,” and on the back, “An Economy for the 99%. Healthcare for all. Jobs with Dignity. Quality Public Education. A Healthy Environment.” Or, another sign, “Single Payer Healthcare.” Another read, “Real Funding. Speculation Tax,” and another, “Tax Wall Street.”

There must have

been at least two or three thousand people at the National Nurses United Rally at the Daley Center in Chicago this Friday.

National Nurses United is the largest union of Registered Nurses in the United States with about 170,000 members in each state.

When it was founded in 2009, NNU called for union action to counter the corporate assault on the healthcare industry. Their intent was to “organize all direct care RNs

into a single organization capable of exercising influence over the healthcare industry, governments, and employers.” They promote quality, accessible healthcare as a human right.

The demonstrators’ agendas were pretty clear. Corporate interests have had too much influence on our government’s decisions about healthcare and our politicians need to stop feeding at the corporate lobby trough. They want quality healthcare, not war. The sign about the condom certainly was a reference to the demand for decency in legislation for the healthcare industry.

NNU is calling for national single payer healthcare, a speculation tax on Wall Street trades, and an expanded voice in the direction of the healthcare industry.

Many nurses wore

red shirts and a “robin hood” hat to remind all of the need to institute a Speculation Tax–frequently called the ‘robin hood tax’– on all Wall Street trades.

Their ideas are pretty simple and grounded in common sense. All were peaceful. All seemed to hold to the belief that all Americans have the right to be engaged in the political process and to have common decency, care and respect for all implemented into our laws.


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