‘Referendum on America’
It’s been less than a week since the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act, labeling it “constitutional” and setting in motion a frenzy of polarized assertions.
The drama that surrounded the Court’s ruling was resounding. Locally, health care providers, the Tea Party, the Rhode Island GOP and local politicians spewed out email statements within minutes of the announcement. Twitter and Facebook alit with cheers and jeers, and humor websites cashed in on people’s ironic public announcements they’d be moving to Canada.
The flurry of opinions following the ruling garnered almost as much attention as the decision itself. It was a telling moment: with the prominence of social media, the news has become fodder for whose comment will be the fastest, the most intelligent, or the wittiest?
And it wasn’t just Tweeters and Facebookers or advocacy and political groups that wanted to be the first to shout the loudest; it was the media too.
In a major gaffe, CNN reported that the Supreme Court had voted to strike down “ObamaCare,” a mistake that trickled to other news sources and caused many to wipe proverbial egg from their faces.
But enough about the reactions. What does the Supreme Court’s ruling really mean?
For those who rallied in support of ObamaCare, it’s a triumph: proof that Obama is making that “change” he promised four years ago. It’s a step toward ensuring that the health care system in America doesn’t continue down its shoddy path of enormous premiums and imbalanced provisions. It’s justice.
But for those who oppose it, it’s about more than health care.
Mark Zaccaria, chairman of the Rhode Island GOP, cited last week’s events as a turning point for Americans, saying the November elections won’t be just about picking a side. Instead, they’ll be a “referendum on America.”
But what does that mean? Zaccaria said November would be a time when people can decide if they like where the country is headed, or if they’d rather veer back toward the nation we learned about in text books.
The Tea Party agrees, and hopes that for those who oppose Obama, the ruling can kindle within them the will to make change.
The opposition sounds like it’s getting fired up. But as much as the proponents of Obama may seem happy and complacent at the moment, it’s hard to imagine this ruling hasn’t gotten them just as ready to spring into action as their counterparts on the other side of the partisan divide.
Sure, it’s only July, but the results of last week’s ruling will be just as hot a topic come chilly November.