Miss USA's Answer On Health Care Was Controversial, But Redirect Your Outrage

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Kara McCullough, the newly crowned Miss USA, generated controversy on Sunday night over an answer she gave onstage at the pageant about health care (in addition to remarks she made about feminism).

McCullough was asked whether health care is a privilege or a right for Americans.

She responded, "I'm definitely going to say it's a privilege."

McCullough, who works as a scientist at the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission, added,

As a government employee, I'm granted healthcare. And I see firsthand that for one, to have healthcare, you need to have jobs, so therefore we need to continue to cultivate this environment so that we're given the opportunities to have healthcare as well as jobs for all Americans worldwide.

People were furious with McCullough's answer, and what she said created quite a lot of conversation on Twitter.

McCullough's perspective can be considered selfish and flawed.

Like McCullough, there are many in this country who believe they shouldn't have to pay (be taxed) for other people's health care.

But there are numerous arguments against this perspective.

McCullough has healthcare through her government job.

She thinks it's OK for a job to help provide healthcare, and we need to "cultivate" an environment where others are given the same opportunity.

Perhaps she hasn't considered a scenario in which someone is unhealthy, can't afford health care to get better and can't get a job because of their health.

There's also the fact going to college in this country is becoming increasingly expensive, and in order to get a job that helps provide health care, you often have to have a college degree.

In other words, receiving health care via an employer is dependent on numerous factors McCullough seems to have overlooked.

The current system is incredibly disadvantageous to millions of Americans.

Based on her perspective on health care, McCullough seemingly lacks compassion for the poor and sickly.

When people in the US say "health care is a right," what they mean is that it should be, because we don't live in a country that lives by or upholds this notion.

Those who believe health care is a right feel no man, woman or child in the US should live without access to the health care they need.

There are many societies in which health care is treated as a right, in the sense they have universal health care and are taxed in order to support such a system.

The US is not one of these countries.

In fact, it's the only developed country in the world without universal health care.

There's a strong case to be made that the healthier a society is, the more prosperous it can be.

In other words, healthy people help create a healthy economy.

So, while people like McCullough feel they shouldn't have to pay for other people's health care, they're arguably only hurting their country and themselves in the grand scheme of things.

We are taxed for numerous other vital services in the US. Why is health care, which is crucial to living a full life, considered less important?


Yes, Miss USA was arguably wrong, but why are we looking to her and other celebrities as authorities on issues like this?

It's understandable why people believe McCullough's answer on health care matters.

This is a life or death issue, and the notion health care is a privilege arguably perpetuates a system that punishes the poor when they get sick or need medical assistance.

But, at the same time, perhaps we should spend less time worrying about what Miss USA thinks about health care, and be more concerned about the current debate in Congress.

Republicans in the House just passed a health care plan that's terrible for the old, poor, women, people with preexisting conditions and so many others.

Kara McCullough was a participant in a beauty pageant. She's a scientist and clearly intelligent. But she's not a politician or an expert on health care.

Let's save our outrage for the people who deserve it: Those in Congress who voted for a health care bill that would see 24 million Americans without health insurance by 2026.