America was built on the foundation of the First Amendment, which provides its citizens with the promise of free speech. Therefore it should be a given that the President of the United States of America would embrace such freedoms and allow for all opinions to be heard, especially when those opinions are directed towards him. Unfortunately this is far from the case.
Beginning in March, we began to cover the fact that President Trump had been blocking Americans on Twitter who posted opposing views to him. In fact, several of our journalists here at IR.net have also been blocked by the President for replying to tweets made by him with views which may have countered his own. While such actions appear to resemble those you’d see from dictators like Kim Jong-un or Vladimir Putin, we have learned to live with the fact that some of our journalists can no longer interact with the President. The blocks have continued though, and have hit a woman whom we feel should have her opinion heard, not only by the President, but by the majority of the GOP in the House and the Senate.
A 41-year-old woman named Laura Packard from Las Vegas, Nevada, who is battling Stage 4 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, was just blocked by the President for simply stating her opinion on the GOP’s Graham-Cassidy health care bill, that President Trump supports. Yesterday afternoon, following a tweet by Trump stating “As President of the United States of America, I will ALWAYS put #AmericaFirst #UNGA,” Packard replied with two simple tweets of her own.
“Don’t you mean put America last? Your latest TrumpCare bill would mean 32M Americans will lose their health insurance. What about putting them first?” She wrote.
According to analysts, the new Graham-Cassidy bill which the GOP is trying to push through, would raise annual premiums on those with metastatic cancer, like Packard, to approximately $140,000. It would basically make those like Packard choose between treatment, or possible death.
This morning Packard found that the President had blocked her from viewing and/or replying to his tweets.
“I don’t know if he just woke up on the wrong side of the bed today or what,” Packard explained to ThinkProgress. “I cannot afford [a $141,000 premium] and I suspect most people cannot. I just wish that he would listen.”
Perhaps the President didn’t know what Packard was going through when she tweeted him her message, but there is no excuse for him to block Americans from accessing his tweets and leaving their comments on them. Let’s hear your thoughts on this story in the comments section below.