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Health Care Debate Comes to San Diego

Protesters rallied for and against health care reform in Hillcrest in San Die...

Photo by Katie Orr

Above: Protesters rallied for and against health care reform in Hillcrest in San Diego on August 11, 2009.


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— The health care debate came to San Diego last night. Congresswoman Susan Davis was in town to speak at a Hillcrest Town Council Meeting. When word of her appearance leaked, people on both sides of the debate showed up to make their voices heard.

The streets around the Joyce Beers Uptown Community Center might be filled with people going to the local stores and restaurants on a typical day, but Tuesday night wasn’t typical when Congresswoman Susan Davis showed up.

Groups both for and against health care reform faced off against each other on opposite street corners. The road cut a stark line between them. Police stood by to keep the road clear. Judy Parry was in front of the community center looking at the group demonstrating across the street.

“These people are ridiculous. They don’t understand the ramifications of the health care system that we have now that is so broken. And some of their signs make them look like fools,” she says. “Don’t mess with my Medicare, don’t mess with my health care, the government can’t get involved. What do they think they’re getting now?”

Parry believes the country will go broke if things don’t change. But across the road Jim Glover was agitated and vocal. He says government involvement isn’t the answer.

“Government, you give them a dollar to go buy groceries, they’ll come back with ten cents worth of groceries, typical federal government efficiency. Best thing to do is use the market. Market capitalism takes care of that,” he says.

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Above: "San Diego Week" looks into the issues that have delayed President Obama's push for health care reform.

While the protesters on both sides were loud and passionate, nothing got out of hand.

Inside the community center Congresswoman Susan Davis got a much warmer welcome than some Congress members have been getting in their hometowns. This wasn’t a town hall meeting on health care. It was a Hillcrest Town Council Meeting that a staffer for Davis says she regularly speaks at. But health care did dominate the questions at the meeting.

Davis talked into a microphone with a small portable speaker, a sign that the Hillcrest Town Council doesn’t usually have such a big audience. In about an hour the meeting was done and Davis was whisked away. But the protesters stayed. They were outside waiving signs, chanting slogans and making sure their voices were heard.


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