So I was browsing facebook today only to be bombarded yet again by advertisements, this time for Health Insurance...for pets. I am completely speechless, in the way that I don't know if I should jump for joy or start screaming.
I learned in school that insurance is a good thing - we spread risk among a group of risk averse people and everyone's happier - most of all the health insurance companies. Fine, I can live with that. But now that health insurance is unobtainable to most people in this country, I don't know how I feel about the fact that dogs and cats and some parrots on the UES will have a better health insurance than millions of Americans. Some people from PETA will come after me and say, "Why should we lower our standards for pets just because our government can't get it together for humans? Just because some people can't get health insurance, it shouldn't stop animals from getting one".
Well, the problem is that the money that will go towards paying for these pet health insurance is a result of discrimination, unequal playing field, and economic exploitation of humans around the world (think rich pharma CEOs testing drugs on children in Africa) that results in disgusting wealth disparity that we see across countries today. If someone is rich enough to insure the health of their pets, doesn't it disturb you that they won't pay to help people whom they exploited to get a health insurance?
In 2006, Americans spent $15.2 billion on pet food - how many health insurance (for humans) can we buy with that money?