JESSE JACKSON: States' Refusal to Expand Medicaid is Deadly Attack on Poor Americans

Jesse L. Jackson Sr., Special to The Informer | 4/22/2014, 9:37 p.m.
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Jesse Jackson (Courtesy of rainbowpush.org)

People of color — primarily African Americans in Mississippi and the former confederate states, Latinos in Texas and elsewhere — are disproportionately the victims of this cruelty.

That should not surprise. From John C. Calhoun’s South Carolina Ordinance of Nullification to secession, the Civil War to segregation, states’ rights has always been a doctrine wielded to oppress minorities, even at the cost of depriving poor working people of all races.

These governors and legislators assume that poor people do not register and do not vote (and they are passing laws to make it harder for them to do so). They assume that most Americans won’t care if thousands die needlessly. They assume that states’ rights can allow America to move from one nation to two nations, separate and unequal.

Charlene Dill is neither the first nor the last to be lost to this callous calculation. But I believe we are a better country than that. Working and poor people have an insult level that is being violated. People of conscience will not turn their eyes forever. This is a moral disgrace that cannot be simply ignored.

Keep up with Rev. Jackson and the work of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition at www.rainbowpush.org.