March 27th, 2012
08:06 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: Readers go back and forth as Supreme Court mulls health care law

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

As the U.S. Supreme Court hears oral arguments about President Barack Obama's Affordable Care Act, our readers are making some arguments of their own. Some are even protesting. Comment below and share your thoughts and ideas about health care.

Supreme Court divided over health care mandate

We've been hearing from several readers, including a bunch of iReporters, about this measure.

"We need universal health care," says Matt Sky of New York. He suggests the insurance companies have a conflict of interest when treating people. Jannet Walsh of Murdock, Minnesota, says she likes the law in theory but is unsure that people will be able to pay for it. Houston, Texas, resident Vera Richardson says we're already required to purchase auto insurance, so why not health insurance?

Some, like Mark Ivy of Farmersburg, Indiana, suggested leaving health care programs to the states.

k3vsDad: "I say no to this being a federal mandate. To me this is a violation of the 10th Amendment. This is an issue that should remain with the states. The states have a much better handle developing health care programs tailored to their citizens. One size does not fit all. Every time the federal government overreaches, it is never better, but worse. Give health care back to the states."

Egberto Willies of Kingwood, Texas, says he believes Obama's plan was a compromise, and he might even like to see it go further.

"I am of two minds. Sometimes I want the mandate struck down in order to speed up how soon we will ultimately get Medicare for all (single-payer health care). But then given the lack of congressional competence, I then revert back to doing this in pieces starting with the current bill."

These two comments represent the debate pretty well.

IndyHoosier9: "This is about health care costs. Right now, if a person goes to the hospital and does not have health insurance, they get treated and the rest of us pay for it (in our health care costs). So it comes down to two options: either require health insurance by everyone, or tell hospitals not to treat anyone without health insurance."

tp16: "This is certainly one of the most crucial decisions the Supreme Court will make in determining the power of the federal government. This administration and its Justice Department have had to resort to every sort of stretch imaginable to try to justify [this]. What the administration wants to do is to impose a tax without the political liability of calling it a tax. This president has taken a swipe at individual rights, under the guise of the collective good, purely to save face."

Another story generated a different sort of conversation about health care. Three-year-old Violet McManus suffers from seizures that threaten her breathing.

The Supreme Court, health care reform and one little girl

Her parents are worried the Supreme Court could restore lifetime limits on Violet's insurance coverage. She was quickly approaching the $5 million lifetime limit on her insurance policy before health care reform. Readers had lots to say about both sides of the issue.

Phange: "I am a medical student with a Master of Health Administration degree. I can say this, without a doubt. Both sides, top to bottom, are dead wrong about health care.

DEMOCRATS – Insurance isn't/has never been the problem. ... (The law is) like putting a Band-Aid on a broken leg. It fixes a problem that doesn't exist, thereby increasing the likelihood that the main problem (a complete oligopoly of price controls within the provider marketplace) will continue.

REPUBLICANS – We currently have the most expensive health care system in the world. ... I would know, I work in it every day. A true fiscal conservative would immediately recognize that we need a radical change in hospital and provider regulations if we are to have any hope of changing course.

The bottom line is that neither of you actually care about health care. You've turned one of the most important humanitarian fields into a political game."

This reader supports the measure.

SoCaliBB: "I was diagnosed with leukemia at the age of 9 and underwent two years of chemo. I have since then been diagnosed with two additional health scares in my life and I"m still in my 20s. Thankfully, I was either under my parents or my own health insurance and hardly had to pay the treatments because I had good coverage. I HATE to think what a person or family would go through if they had no insurance. It's very gut-wrenching and devastating if you think about it. I'm willing to pay more in taxes, insurance co-pays, whatever if it means that others get the same type of treatment and health opportunity as I have."

This comment comes from someone who opposes the law

Peshwar: "Let's cut the sob stories over health care. This debate is not about emotional issues. It is about the constitutionality of forcing American citizens to have to purchase health care or face a penalty. It is about nothing else!"

If a child is sick, how do you pay?

Crystal N: "My daughter is profoundly affected by this law. Like Violet, she's 3. However my daughter got an infection that turned septic at a week of age and almost died. Either the sepsis or the antibiotics that saved her life (or both) caused a kidney to fail. At 10 days of age she had a stroke. She could have hit the cap in her lifetime, particularly if she needs a transplant in the future. The pre-existing conditions issue would have determined her career path and major in college because her first priority once we couldn't cover her would have been insurance. The ACA gives her a future."

Randy Darrah: "So us taxpayers should have to pay for your daughter? I hope your daughter recovers and gets the help she needs, but why is it my responsibility to pay for it?"

Some other readers talked about the portions of the law that bothered them.

Opinion0731: "Most people will agree that there are a handful of provisions in Obamacare are good. The problem is that there is a lot more bad in the law then there is good. Putting a sick child on the headline and making it and sound like overturning Obamacare is a personal attack on this little girl. I agree that the problems with health care need to be addressed, but a 2,500-page law that is filled with a lot of costly provisions isn't the solution."

sporty53: "Actually, it's the other way around. More good than bad. I have yet to hear more than three things Republicans don't like in this bill."

sdpianomom:
"1. It pays for abortions
2. It doesn't include tort reform
3. It forces all Americans to purchase insurance sometimes against their will
4. It requires religious institutions to fund procedures or medicines against their religious beliefs
5. It is adding trillions to the national debt; we simply can't afford it
6. It does not allow for the purchase of insurance across state lines which would create greater competition and lower prices."

What do you think? Do you have ideas to fix the health care system? Should health insurance be required by law? Share your opinion in the comments area below and in the latest stories on CNN.com. Or send us a video comment via CNN iReport.

Compiled by the CNN.com moderation staff. Some comments edited for length or clarity.

soundoff (346 Responses)
  1. TSK

    I blacked out because I had a ear virus and the Hospital knew it but they insisted they do heart surgery just-in-case (sothey could grab more cash from the insurance company) that did not exist–the employeer said your fired because the 20 year old nurse on the exit paperwork wrote that I was depressed although that was her personal opinion not the doctors then when the employeer told me I was fired unless I signed away my privecy on the medical records they fired me after I signed away my privecy as soon as the employeer saw the word depressed on the hospital papperwork–i told the nurse not to use that word on my paperwork because it was going to lead to the end of my job–and it was factless–but her coffie break was more important then my future–all lawers agree that it was all legal all the way around and even if it was not I was not a black woman or man so I did not have a chance in court–so have a nice day–suckers–

    March 29, 2012 at 3:47 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  2. TSK

    2 other friends at two other employeers got fingered for depression at the same time both were fired and although we all had health care savings accounts the money was taken by the employeer–i was disabled the other was fine and a white male we got nothing but a hard time and the guy who was black got a huge settlment because the employeer fired him without first giving him 70, 000 dollars–all of us used a doctor and a manditory employeer baised health care plan–all three employers are large publicaly traded companies–some of them were bailed out by the federal goverment and one was sold to another country–

    March 29, 2012 at 3:58 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. TSK

    hands off my heathcare my ass you don't know what you do not know and the supreme court is a enemy of the state just ask the koch bros. how their war against the woring class is going– the company doctor that fired me was a morbidly obease middle aged black woman who wore a black judges robe into my appointment with her no joke she wrote the companies insurance plan against the unions on strike but she was not a lawer or a judge and would not show me her diploma

    March 29, 2012 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. TSK

    I dive a car to the pharmacy and doctors appointmets it has insurance because you'll end up infront of a judge if caught without insurance and the used car I paid cash for 10 plus years ago has not had a oil change in two years and is always on or below e

    March 29, 2012 at 5:56 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. TSK

    nice work free market free for those on wall street to charge what ever they want get bailed out get tax breaks don't pay taxes and raise gas prices fund terrorists that kill americans inside and out of america

    March 29, 2012 at 6:02 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  6. TSK

    if you have kids or grand kids just wisper in their ears when its real still your future is futureles because of the supreme courts political agenda

    March 29, 2012 at 6:08 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  7. TSK

    maybe show them the jet blue pilots melt down just another working stiff that knows too much

    March 29, 2012 at 6:12 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  8. leeintulsa

    lol coburn. another reason to be proud to be an okie.

    he did an "unscientific" poll of doctors, most likely his friends. he's a doctor...

    anyway, something like 74 percent think obamacare will hurt the deficit.

    the other day, as my accountant was removing my gall bladder, i asked him what he thought. he said, 'doctors don't study economics'.

    March 29, 2012 at 6:15 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  9. TSK

    LOOK: THE SCOTUS CLERKS ARE YOUNG HEALTHY SMART MOUTH PUNKS AT BEST THEY DO NOT UNDERSTAND HOW THE MEDICAL CORPORATE HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS WORK WITH INSURANCE AND PATIONTS ADD GOVERMENT PROGRAMS AT THE STATE AND NATIONAL LEVEL AND YOU MIGHT AS WELL GO TALK TO A TREE ABOUT MARS ROVER PROGRAMING THE JUSTICES CANT UNDERSTAND IT MOST OF CONGRESS DOES NOT UNDERSTAND IT AND WILL NEVER UNDERSTAND IT–REMEMBER SARA PALIN ON THE FLOOR GRABING HER KNEES BECAUSE HER BRAIN WAS OVER LOADED–THATS WHERE IT STARTS AND THEN YOU ARE TALKING IN YOUR SLEEP AND WRITING ENTIRE LETTERS ON THE SUBJECT WHILE SLEEP WALKING–THATS THE NEXT STEP THEN YOU RELIZE WHY NO ONE IN THE BUSH ADMIN COULD GET BIN LADEN AND THEN YOU RELIZE THAT THE SMARTEST PEOPLE YOU KNOW INCLUDING M.D.S ARE CLUELESS NEARING IGNORANT–AND THEN YOU ARE ALONE REALLY ALONE–THATS WHERE YOU START–IT IS WHAT IT IS–

    March 29, 2012 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  10. TSK

    THE LOTTO THE AMERICAN DREAM IS A GOVERMENT PROGRAM THAT RAISES MONEY FOR THE OPERATION OF THE GOVERMENT IT IS A TAX AND IT IS NOT A CARROT OR A ORANGE OR A CELL PHONE BUT IT IS ON T.V. AND THE RADIO ALL GOVERMENT ALL MANDATED AND UNDER CONTROL OF THE CONGRESS AND ALREADY JUSTIFIED UNDER THE SUPREME COURTS PAPERWORK

    March 30, 2012 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. TSK

    ever notice how the V.A. does not have a emergency room and veterans who have heart attacks use privet insurance or pay out of pocket to go to the Emergency room by privet ambulence

    March 30, 2012 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  12. TSK

    EVER NOTICE HOW ABULENCE COMPANYS SEND YOU A BILL EVEN IF YOU DID NOT CALL THEM THEY GO TO A HOUSE YOU DO NOT OWN AND YOU REFUSE TREATMENT AND YOU DO NOT EVEN GET IN THE AMBULENCE YET YOU STILL OWE THE PRIVET AMBULENCE COMPANY WHAT EVER THEY CHARGE YOU 1500 HUNDRED DOLLARS BUT IF YOU GIVE THEM PRIVET INSURANCE AFTER THEY SEND A COLLECTION AGENT TO YOUR EMPLOYEER TO SCREW YOU THEY TAKE 800 DOLLARS AS FINAL PAYMENT FROM THE INSURANCE COMPANY AND LET YOU OFF THE HOOK–HOW IS THAT FREEDOM HOW IS THAT NOT THE FAULT OF THE SUPREME COURT HOW IS THE SUPREME COURT DO ANYTHING THAT THEY ARE NOT TOLD TO DO BY SOME RICH CAPITALIST PIG WHO HATES YOU BECAUSE THEY WANT TO STEEL FROM YOU

    March 30, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  13. TSK

    Have you ever had a privet health insurance company pay an ambulence company 800 dollars then turn around and send you a bill for 1500 dollars because you refused to get inside the ambulence because the ambulence was not called by you and anyone with a brain could see that there was no medical justification to got to the E.R. you just needed to eat something and the ambulence did not feed you the person who called 911 did even though you told the person who called 911 in advance not to call 911 and your own personal doctor told you not to go to the E.R.–I have–

    March 30, 2012 at 4:20 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  14. TSK

    The Cornhusker kickback that SCOTUS talked about is not only not in the HCR bill it never actully happened

    This is a FACT

    I fail to understand why SCOTUS does not use FACTS and why SCOTUS refuses to READ–

    WHO EVER HEARD OF A LAWER THAT CANNOT AND WILL NOT READ–

    March 30, 2012 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  15. TSK

    EVER NOTICE HOW MEDICARE PART D WAS NEVER PAID FOR AND IS A GOVERMENT PROGRAM AND THE PRICES ON THE EXACT SAME MEDICATIONS ARE 4 TIMES THE PRICE SAME PRIVET PHARMACY AND EVEN THE PRIVET INSURANCE TO SUPPLEMENT MEDICARE PART D ONLY ALLOWS YOU TO PAY THE MOST EXSPENSIVE PRICE–THIS IS REGULATED BY THE US GOV. AND THE DRUG COMPANIES TAKE ALL THE PROFIT FROM YOU THREE TIMES AND WAY AND THE GOV. ABOUT FIVE TIMES AND WAYS AND THE PHARMACY TAKES MONEY FROM YOU ONCE AND THE INSURANCE TWICE AND THE GOVERMENT THREE TIMES ALL FOR JUST ONE PILL THAT YOU CAN BUY OVER THE COUNTER THE NEXT DAY FOR 50 cents AFTER YOU ALREADY PAID 2 DOLLARS A PILL WITH A 30 DAY MIN. PURCHASE AND ALL OF THIS IS GOVERMENT REGULATED FREE TRADE IN THE U.S.

    March 30, 2012 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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