Though I am loathe to wade into an ongoing and bitter war of letters conducted in these pages, I wish to correct a recent contributor, who stated that “insurance is NOT the job of the government, it is not in the Constitution,” [emphasis her own].
I would point out that in its very first sentence, the Constitution reads: “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union . . . promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”
Therefore, contrary to the writer’s assertion that it’s not in the Constitution, promoting the welfare (“Health, happiness, and good fortune; well-being,” American Heritage Dictionary, Third Edition) of our fellow citizens is not just permitted, it is one of the specific purposes for which our government was created. Perhaps an individual insurance mandate isn’t the perfect means of achieving that noble goal, but let’s set aside the question of whether it should be our goal at all – the nation’s founders settled it more than two hundred years ago.