Indiana Republicans asked for 'horror stories' on Facebook. It backfired.

Want to hear a scary story? The Indiana Republican Party sure does.

On Monday, July 3, 2017, the party took to its Facebook page to ask followers to share "Obamacare Horror Stories."

"Did you lose a doctor that you liked? Have your premiums increased? Did your insurer leave the exchange? Are burdensome regulations hurting your small business?" the post reads.


The horror! The absolute horror of it all! (Insert spooky music here.)

Did you lose a doctor that you liked? Have your premiums increased? Did your insurer leave the exchange? Are burdensome...

Posted by Indiana Republican Party on Monday, July 3, 2017

Instead of getting actual health care horror stories, people responded with powerful, emotional defenses of Obamacare.

Health care providers lined up to share how the Affordable Care Act not only helped improve the overall health of their local communities, but helped improve their local economies.

"Not only did those people benefit, but we had to hire more therapists to care for them, which created jobs." All screenshots are from the comments on the original Facebook post and used with permission by the individual commenters.

Parents shared tearful stories about how before the ACA, their young children would have run up against their insurance's lifetime limits well short of adulthood. Thanks to the ACA, annual and lifetime limits are a thing of the past, and people can't be charged more for a pre-existing condition (such as being born prematurely).

"Obamacare has saved our family and we are so grateful for it."

"Under Obamacare, the insurance companies have to insure him with what they define as his 'pre-existing' condition."

Others expounded on how the care received because of the law literally saved their lives or those of people they love.

"If it were not for Obamacare my kids would have no mother, I would not have a partner, and parents would have lost their daughter. She would be dead."

Entrepreneurs talked about how the ACA allowed them to take a chance on starting their own small businesses and escaping "job lock," something that would almost certainly return if the law were to be repealed.

"Obamacare made it possible for me to take the plunge."

"We have been able to stay healthy and afford our medications, even with our pre-existing conditions."

But the truth is that none of the "repeal and replace" proposals put out there by Republicans in Congress address the "horror stories" of losing access to a doctor you might like or rising premiums. Even if they did, are those flaws any more horrific than the fact that millions more will lose their access to lifesaving health care under these new proposals? Probably not.

Maybe instead of trying to score political points, our elected representatives should simply try to do what's best for the country.

And Facebook user Dana Ann nailed it with her comment about coming together for the sake of creating a health care system that works for all Americans, for all political parties. Lives are actually on the line, and it's time for our members of Congress to stop playing like this is a game.

"We are not playing a football game where one side wins and one side loses... we are ONE nation!"

There's still time to stop the ACA repeal effort, and there's still time to demand that your senators and representatives work together, regardless of party, to fix the flaws in our system. You can start by calling your senators today.

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When Molly Reeser was a student at Michigan State University, she took a job mucking horse stalls to help pay for classes. While she was there, she met a 10-year-old girl named Casey, who was being treated for cancer, and — because both were animal lovers — they became fast friends.

Two years later, Casey died of cancer.

"Everyone at the barn wanted to do something to honor her memory," Molly remembers. A lot of suggestions were thrown out, but Molly knew that there was a bigger, more enduring way to do it.

"I saw firsthand how horses helped Casey and her family escape from the difficult and terrifying times they were enduring. I knew that there must be other families who could benefit from horses in the way she and her family had."

Molly approached the barn owners and asked if they would be open to letting her hold a one-day event. She wanted to bring pediatric cancer patients to the farm, where they could enjoy the horses and peaceful setting. They agreed, and with the help of her closest friends and the "emergency" credit card her parents had given her, Molly created her first Camp Casey. She worked with the local hospital where Casey had been a patient and invited 20 patients, their siblings and their parents.

The event was a huge success — and it was originally meant to be just that: a one-day thing. But, Molly says, "I believe Casey had other plans."

One week after the event, Molly received a letter from a five-year-old boy who had brain cancer. He had been at Camp Casey and said it was "the best day of his life."

"[After that], I knew that we had to pull it off again," Molly says. And they did. Every month for the next few years, they threw a Camp Casey. And when Molly graduated, she did the most terrifying thing she had ever done and told her parents that she would be waitressing for a year to see if it might be possible to turn Camp Casey into an actual nonprofit organization. That year of waitressing turned into six, but in the end she was able to pull it off: by 2010, Camp Casey became a non-profit with a paid staff.

"I am grateful for all the ways I've experienced good luck in my life and, therefore, I believe I have a responsibility to give back. It brings me tremendous joy to see people, animals, or things coming together to create goodness in a world that can often be filled with hardships."

Camp Casey serves 1500 children under the age of 18 each year in Michigan. "The organization looks different than when it started," Molly says. "We now operate four cost-free programs that bring accessible horseback riding and recreational services to children with cancer, sickle cell disease, and other life-threatening illnesses."

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