While many lame duck politicians are happy to let the senioritis bite them hard and deep as they coast out the rest of their tour of duty, it seems as though Governor Mary Fallin is determined to not get her deposit on the Mansion back. This past weekend, she fired off both barrels at the Native American community and the impoverished who rely on Medicaid. And while this is nothing new for those of us who’ve lived under her Botoxed wraith lo these many years, these recent rulings seem to have a little bit more spite on them than usual.
Payback, apparently, is a bitch and Fallin is gonna make sure that the Indigenous peoples of Oklahoma will have to keep wishing and hoping and praying for a little more respect when it comes to our cultural identity and un-whitewashed history by refusing to make Columbus Day—you know, the rapist who didn’t even discover America—the far more history-friendly Oklahoma Native American Day.
Fallin’s veto of House Bill 2661 prevents moving Oklahoma Native American Day from the third Monday in November to the second Monday in October, the same day as Columbus Day. From her own statement:
“I believe combining a new Native American Day designation with the current Columbus Day holiday could be viewed as an intentional attempt to diminish the long-standing support of November being proclaimed annually as Native American Heritage Month…”
Sorry, but that’s basically the political equivalent of sitting in the backseat and your sister holding her hand in front of your face and taunting “Not touching you! Not touching you!” But, I guess we deserve it. We’ve given her (and her assorted family members) so much grief by holding her, you know, accountable, that she might as well do when she can with what remaining power she has left.
But at least Natives will live to fight another day. The same can’t be said for the sick and impoverished who count on Medicaid to, well, live in general. Fallin signed House Bill 2932 on Monday which would require some Medicaid recipients to work for 20 hours a week, engage in work-training programs or a combination of both or lose their benefits, which, if you know either Oklahoma’s job market or the people who are on Medicaid, is all types of dystopic fuckery.
“It is imperative to provide expectations for all of our citizens who are able to work,” said Fallin. “Medicaid recipients who are able-bodied will be able to take advantage of job-training programs and work opportunities that lead to a stable job, self-sufficiency, and success. Medicaid is meant to be a safety net for the most vulnerable among us: the medically frail, pregnant women, new mothers, and children. Those individuals will continue to be exempt from work requirements.”
It’s the Oklahoma Standard in action! While I’m sure the physically healthy, financially secure and emotionally dead among you are applauding this decision with a spot of tea and professional monocle steaming, this bill will affect over 8,000 Oklahomans, many of which you’re going to end up paying for anyway because, sorry, but if sickness like this just doesn’t go away, it gets worse and Medicare at least provides some respite.
Of course, when it comes to healthcare, Fallin and her family will never have to worry about that for the rest of their lives. They can take selfies in Dubai while, for us, we get to watch grandma stock shelves at Wal-Mart while suffering from pneumonia. Rep. Forrest Bennett agrees, but he’s a Democrat so screw him. From kfor.com:
“They’re going after Healthcare for very vulnerable citizens of Oklahoma who really need it, and it’s morally the wrong thing to do,” said Rep. Forrest Bennett, D-Oklahoma City. “This is another example of what happens when budgets get tight; poor people are the first to suffer in this state.”
Bennett also claimed the measure does not take into account the impact on hospitals.
“Emergency rooms have a responsibility to take care of people who walk into their doors, regardless. Sometimes, what happens pretty regularly, with people in poverty is that, when they get sick, they go to the ER, instead of going to their physician, because they can’t afford it. When you go to the ER, they have to take care of you,” he told News 4. “Hospitals take that hickey on that funding; they pay for it.”
When push comes to shove, I guess if you get too sick, the most Oklahoman thing you can do is support the Second Amendment and blow your brains out. Then maybe someone on Medicaid can clean up the mess for a few dollars. Everybody wins!