Amazingly, a lot of people STILL don’t know that the Affordable Care Act and Obamacare are the same thing.
There are a lot of interesting stats in a New York Times article about this today.
And a lot of us remember seeing this video:
It’s a comedy bit, so I’m sure there was some selection bias on the part of the producers, and anyone who did know they were the same was left out of the video.
Millions of people, deliberately confused by Fakes News and hateradio, think that Obamacare is some big awful Democratic tax-n-spend black president forcing hardworking WWC folks to give benefits to lazy PoC thing.
But they think the Affordable Care Act is, well, something else.
Snopes.com has not been able to find out whether this Facebook exchange is authentic:
The really important polling, as far as I know, has never been done.
Folks are confused about whether the ACA is Obamacare, but my guess is that even MORE of them are confused about whether the exchange in their state is the same as the Affordable Care Act is the same as Obamacare.
THAT is the level of misunderstanding that we need to address.
Mitch McConnell got away with telling people in Kentucky who love Kynect that it had nothing to do with Obamacare and they believed him.
When we are dealing with people whose education, awareness and exposure to facts is minimal, we have to speak simply and not make assumptions about what people understand.
I have seen things that say Obamacare = Affordable Care Act, but that does not connect to the actual name of the plans people signed up under.
I have seen things that say “Obamacare = Affordable Care Act = Healthy Indiana” for example, but that is too complicated. We have to avoid constructions like A = B and B = C means A = C. That makes sense to people with basic math skills, but millions of people will be stymied by it.
Remember the number one rule of Plain Talk Tuesday: explain the issue as if you were explaining it to a Third Grader.
Third graders have not studied algebra so unless they are precocious “A = B and B = C means A = C” is too complicated for them.
Here is your plain talk assignment for today.
1) Find out the name of the exchange in your state.
2) Handwrite, xerox or print up some small notices that say something like the following (include the name of the plan in your state, and the names of your Senators, even if they are Democrats):
OUR HEALTH CARE PLAN IS AT RISK!
DID YOU KNOW that [Nevada Health Link] is part of Obamacare?
If you have health insurance from [Nevada Health Link]
and Obamacare is repealed,
we could lose our health insurance.
Please call [Senator Heller and Senator Cortez-Masto].
Both can be reached at 202-224-3121.
Tell them HANDS OFF [Nevada Health Link]! HANDS OFF Obamacare!
3) Distribute these in interesting public places. Post it on the bulletin board at your community center. Leave a few at the laundromat. Put them under the windshield wipers of cars at a local mall. Leave a few in the drug store near the pharmacy section. Leave one on the table when you leave the fast food restaurant. Be creative about other public places where you can leave flyers.
4) Drop it into conversation with people in a gentle way, as if it is information you have recently learned. Standing in line at the grocery store, waiting at the bus stop, at coffee hour after worship. “Hey, I just heard Your Health Idaho is part of Obamacare, and if Obamacare is repealed I could lose my health insurance. Did you hear that too? Am I the last one to know?”
If you are talking to someone who has been living under a rock, continue with, “Well you know the Republicans control the House and Senate in Washington now, and they always said they would repeal Obamacare if they got control of Congress. But I don’t want them to repeal Obamacare if it is going to affect Your Health Idaho! I need health insurance!”
If you don’t get a response, or you get a negative response, let it drop. You have planted a seed. You may never see that person again. You may be planting seeds in a garden you never get to see. But the next time that person hears about Obamacare repeal it may ring a remembrance bell, and they may be curious to find out whether what you said was true.
If you do get a response, follow up with more facts and make sure to say “I haven’t been involved in this sort of thing up until now but I’m going to call [insert names of Senators] and tell them to leave Obamacare alone!”
This is simple direct action anyone can do.
Again, if you don’t have access to a xerox machine, you can handwrite a few flyers and leave them in a few specific high-traffic places. Most neighborhoods have places where anyone can post notices.
And once you start looking for opportunities to strike up conversations with people, you will see how easy that is too. One to one conversation is the most powerful form of community organizing.
Even if you live in a red area, you can help spread real news among people who are consuming mostly fake news.
Most of the people who think they favor Obamacare repeal have no idea what they would be losing. Most people love the individual parts of Obamacare even though they have been brainwashed to hate the name. Frankly, once people are told the facts, they tend to support leaving Obamacare in place.
Don’t worry about the RWNJs who are operating on party line propaganda alone. We outnumber them. This Plain Talk Tuesday action is aimed at persuadables, and those who are genuinely ignorant about the reality that their healthcare plans are, in fact, Obamacare.
Previous TRUE BLUE REPORT diaries
Feb 6: Interview Skills 101—Internalized oppression and what Ryan Lizza did right. BRAVO!
Feb 5: These protest signs with Bible cites will confuse and befuddle RWNJs
Feb 4: Blue Ribbon Winners: Temple B’Nai Israel, Judge Robart, CNN, Senate Phone Callers
Feb 3: Not rich, not smart, not a good businessman, not a winner—DJT is NOTHING he claims to be
Feb 2: Thursday action—Encouragement, thanks, and apologies (pick one or more)
Feb 1: July 7, 2009 to August 25, 2009 and September 25, 2009 to February 4, 2010
Jan 31: If you’re on overload that’s part of their plan—there’s more than one way to #resist
Jan 30: Interview Skills 101 for reporters attempting to interview KAC and other Rcons
Jan 29: Blessed are they who hunger and thirst after righteousness
Jan 28: Blue Ribbon Winners: Women's March participants and #NoMuslimBan demonstrators and...
Jan 27: I wish Steve Bannon would tell me to keep my mouth shut
Jan 26: Thursday Action—Have you ever written a letter to the editor? Here’s how to start
Jan 25: The Asch Conformity Study, inauguration crowds, and the importance of speaking out
Jan 24: #ResistTrumpTuesday—good news day or another paying dues day?
Jan 23: Spy the Lie 101: How to enjoy watching Rcon spokesbot interviews, even KAC!
Jan 22: Why I prayed for the President* today
Jan 21: The only silver lining in the midst of these clouds
Inaugural (!) diary: Stop expecting Republicons to make sense