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A letter to the editor in today’s Rapid City Journal:

Life in a pre-SCHIP home taught lessons

Life in a pre-SCHIP home taught lessons We need to look at life before SCHIP. I remember a lady in the 1930’s who lost her husband at a young age, leaving her with eight children, the oldest 12. She lived in a small town in a small house. She had no car and worked in grocery stores, the courthouse and in the local bank (years later) until her death.

The mother was too proud to accept commodities. She couldn’t afford health insurance for herself or children and the family had a radio and telephone and running water (you ran out to get it and ran in with it). They had an outside toilet (a 2-holer). There were no school lunch programs. Breakfast was usually dry cereal and lunch was “leftovers” from the previous evening meal. Remarkably, all eight children attended college, the three boys under the GI bill. The mother was still working beyond age 65, so drew no Social Security. How do I know all this? She was my mother. I learned from her, becoming a single parent with three small children (oldest was five). We had no health insurance for the children. SCHIP is unearned welfare — called socialism.


There is an irreplaceable dignity in doing things for your self, even in poverty. Having grown up poor, I know this.

Social welfare programs like SCHIP rob people of this dignity, and when they are extended to people making more than $80,0000 a year, it moves into the realm of the grossly absurd.

by on Oct. 12, 2012 at 12:27 AM
Replies (21-30):
by on Oct. 12, 2012 at 8:27 AM

Sounds like my Grandmother. Sad thing is when my Dad was a little boy he got Rheumatic fever from untreated strep throat. He has major heart and health problems because my Grandmother was unable to get antibiotics for him. More people/children died due to lack of access to medical help.

by on Oct. 12, 2012 at 8:34 AM

State Childrens Health Insurance Plan

Quoting turtle68:

 what is SCHIP?

by on Oct. 12, 2012 at 8:37 AM

People had families.  People lived together, the nuclear family was still intact.  For those that had no families , the Church would be a source of help (for many).   Society is set up so everyone must work to support themselves, leaving no time for even coffee witih friends or relatives, let alone the ability to help one another in a very real , tangible way.  Think about Little House on the Prarie days.  Or did anyone ever read Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt? That took place in Ireland, but same concept of family being raised in dire poverty, and what they did to survive.    Makes me count my blessings for all I have. 

by Ruby Member on Oct. 12, 2012 at 8:40 AM
2 moms liked this
I think in this day & age not providing some kind of health insurance for children, whether thru CHIP or privately, is irresponsible, in the US, the only "1st world" country not to guarantee all its citizenry healthcare. I refused to have a child until I could afford to put that child on my insurance, COBRA if necessary. & I'm glad I made that decision. She has unexpected, expensive, health issues.
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by on Oct. 12, 2012 at 8:44 AM
1 mom liked this

 I know we read about what happened long ago, with families being broken up and sending kids to live with relatives all over or of kids earning money for the family,etc. All I know of in my family was that my Dad's parents always had one of their kids and their whole family living with them at one time or another. When times were tough all four kids knew they could have a temporary home with the parents until they got back on their feet again. MyDad was working a full time job at age 15 to help the family out and through the Great Depression most kids did unless they had wealthy families.Families all moved in together at the largest and most financially stable houshold in the family. I think that would have to be the best solution. Best, before welfare came about.

I see nothing wrong with temporary help from the Government.Its the "welfare cheaters" . the career "welfare leeches" and people who claim disability when there is no disability that makes me angry.

by Woodie on Oct. 12, 2012 at 9:01 AM
6 moms liked this

First of all, a family without running water and using an outhouse would probably have CPS banging on the door these days...not to mention the 8 kids and one adult in a two room shack.

During this time frame there wasn't any compulsory education so those kids were working (and being killed) in factories and fields by age six to bring in money for the family. Also, doctors would barter for their care...I don't see them accepting chickens or livestock in exchange for medicine anymore.

All of the laws we've passed 'to protect us' also serve to prevent us from living and raising our kids in this manner.

 Sexy If its unladylike, fattening or fun, I'm in!

by Platinum Member on Oct. 12, 2012 at 9:25 AM
2 moms liked this

I'm sure people who were poor in 19th century America don't remember it so romantically. These kids sure don't...

by on Oct. 12, 2012 at 9:34 AM
Families took care of each other and people didn't expect others to provide for them jusy because they struggled.
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by Ruby Member on Oct. 12, 2012 at 10:15 AM
5 moms liked this

So it's more important to be prideful than getting your children health care?

That's bullshit.

SCHIP is State Childrens Health Insurance Program.  It is a subsidy for KIDS TO GO TO THE DOCTOR.  I honestly can't believe there are people against this enough to write a self satisfied "oh poor me" article about poverty and why it is so much better than giving chidlren HEALTH CARE.

by Ruby Member on Oct. 12, 2012 at 10:21 AM
4 moms liked this

Well unless your family had a doctor in it you weren't getting health care.  Why glorify pre-schip days when it was not uncommon to lose a child to disease because you couldn't afford a doctor?  Where's the pride in that?  Do you have any idea what the child mortality rates were?  Or life expectancy rates were for kids that did survice childhood?

Quoting Claire-Huxtable:

Families took care of each other and people didn't expect others to provide for them jusy because they struggled.

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