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their own small businesses and escaping "job lock," something that would almost certainly return if the law were to be repealed.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.

Courtesy of Creative Commons
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After years of service as a military nurse in the naval Marine Corps, Los Angeles, California-resident Rhonda Jackson became one of the 37,000 retired veterans in the U.S. who are currently experiencing homelessness — roughly eight percent of the entire homeless population.

"I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with no heat for two years," Jackson said. "The Department of Veterans Affairs was doing everything they could to help but I was not in a good situation."

One day in 2019, Jackson felt a sudden sense of hope for a better living arrangement when she caught wind of the ongoing construction of Veteran's Village in Carson, California — a 51-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom apartments and supportive services to residents through a partnership with U.S.VETS.

Her feelings of hope quickly blossomed into a vision for her future when she learned that Veteran's Village was taking applications for residents to move in later that year after construction was complete.

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We're redefining what normal means in these uncertain times, and although this is different for all of us, love continues to transform us for the better.

Love is what united Marie-Claire and David Archbold, who met while taking a photography class. "We went into the darkroom to see what developed," they joke—and after a decade of marriage, they know firsthand the deep commitment and connection romantic love requires.

All photos courtesy of Marie-Claire and David Archbold

However, their relationship became even sweeter when they adopted James: a little boy with a huge heart.

In the United States alone, there are roughly 122,000 children awaiting adoption according to the latest report from the U.S Department of Health and Human Services. While the goal is always for a child to be parented by and stay with their biological family, that is not always a possibility. This is where adoption offers hope—not only does it create new families, it gives birth parents an avenue through which to see their child flourish when they are not able to parent. For the right families, it's a beautiful thing.

The Archbolds knew early on that adoption was an option for them. David has three daughters from a previous marriage, but knowing their family was not yet complete, the couple embarked on a two-year journey to find their match. When the adoption agency called and told them about James, they were elated. From the moment they met him, the Archbolds knew he was meant to be part of their family. David locked eyes with the brown-eyed baby and they stared at each other in quiet wonder for such a long time that the whole room fell silent. "He still looks at me like that," said David.

The connection was mutual and instantaneous—love at first sight. The Archbolds knew that James was meant to be a part of their family. However, they faced significant challenges requiring an even deeper level of commitment due to James' medical condition.

James was born with congenital hyperinsulinism, a rare condition that causes his body to overproduce insulin, and within 2 months of his birth, he had to have surgery to remove 90% of his pancreas. There was a steep learning curve for the Archbolds, but they were already in love, and knew they were committed to the ongoing care that'd be required of bringing James into their lives. After lots of research and encouragement from James' medical team, they finally brought their son home.

Today, three-year-old James is thriving, filled with infectious joy that bubbles over and touches every person who comes in contact with him. "Part of love is when people recognize that they need to be with each other," said his adoptive grandfather. And because the Archbolds opted for an open adoption, there are even more people to love and support James as he grows.

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You know that feeling you get when you walk into a classroom and see someone else's stuff on your desk?

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