Letters to the Editor September 5, 2002
It's time for Congress to do something about medicine costs
I am 58 years old and recently retired after working for 36 years at the same company. I took a lump-sum buy-out rather than a monthly pension. Due to poor stock performance, brought about by corporate greed and a downturn in the economy, my lump-sum pension and 401-K savings have been reduced by one-third. I am now planning to go back to work, if I can find a job in today's job market. Social Security is the only real back-up plan that I have, and believe me, I don't want that invested in the stock market.
I lost both my parents in the last 2 years. My dad was the strongest man that I have ever known. He didn't cry when his father died, but on the day we willed a prescription that he had to have to live, he cried when he found out the cost of the prescription because it was almost half of his family income. After my mother died, we found out that she had been skipping her medicine in an effort to save money. They both worked hard all their lives. My dad fought in World War II. They deserved better.
It is time for Congress to pass a universal, comprehensive prescription drug benefit under Medicare. Senator Jeff Sessions has voted against such a plan at least four times. I thought elected officials were supposed to represent the people, not the bottom line of the drug companies. How much longer are seniors going to have to suffer in what should be their golden years.
The prescription drug bill and keeping Social Security secure should be on the minds of all us as we look at the up-coming elections.