Feb 222009
 
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On Thursday, CSU was host to Washington Post correspondent and documentary filmmaker T.R. Reid for a speech on the state of health care in the U.S. and abroad.

With this as a backdrop, the Collegian set out to find out how students feel about the role of government in health care and whether the government should take a more active role in social services in general.

John Crawford, a junior mechanical engineering major, and Kayla Green, a sophomore journalism major, were kind enough to give up a few moments of their time to give us their thoughts.

Q: What do you think the federal government’s role in health care should be?

A: Minimal.

Q: Do you think that role could or should be delegated to the state or local government?

A: Absolutely.

Q: Does the federal government hold a responsibility to provide social services?

A: Not in the least. People need to provide their own. It should be regulated. Drugs and health care should be regulated by the government (to) make sure things are safe. It should be people’s own responsibility to spend their money where they want; they shouldn’t be taxed to pay for somebody else’s decisions if they made them or not.

Q: How should the government handle the pending problems with Social Security?

A: Well, I’ve been told by (economics) students that doubling the current amount they’re taxing Social Security would literally solve the problem. But I don’t think that’s good. I think Social Security is important, but it’s not something that, I guess, should be focused on primarily over other spending.

Q: Is health care a societal or individual concern?

A: Individual. I think it’s your own responsibility, if you’re not interested in your health, saving money or buying insurance to maintain your own health, that’s your decision.

Q: What do you think the federal government’s role in health care should be?

A: I actually believe it’s fairly okay as it is, (but) I guess insurance should be more affordable for most people. But as far as the actual role of health care, I think that it’s right where it should be as far as the U.S. is concerned. I don’t think it should take a more holistic approach like Canada or some other countries.

Q: Do you think that role could or should be delegated to the state or local government?

A: I guess it could be. I mean, it depends on how you want to take it. I kind of feel health care is an individual thing.

Q: Does the federal government hold a responsibility to provide social services?

A: Yes, for social services it does. I think it’s actually stated in the Constitution that it’s supposed to help with the whole life, liberty, pursuit of happiness type of thing, but there are certain goods and services the government is supposed to provide ; protection, I think kind of falls under it. Medical care does fall under it but I think to a certain degree. I think to a certain point people need to take responsibility on their half, too. There’s kind of a medium that needs to be met.

Q: How should the government handle the pending problems with Social Security?

A: Give me more when I get it? (laughs) I’m not sure I’m qualified to answer the Social Security question. That’s because I don’t know much about it.

Q: Is health care a societal or individual concern?

A: I think it’s an individual responsibility, like I said there’s a medium between the two I mean you can offer it but you also have to be willing to accept it, and you have to take in consideration certain things. It’s kind of like coming to CSU — you offer education, but there’s also a price to pay too.

Staff columnist Seth Stern can be reached at letters@collegian.com.

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