Taking responsibility, holding people accountable

A little over 54 years ago, our daughter was born with a rare heart condition.

She had a right-sided, three chambered heart. In fact everything was reversed. After six years of tests, medications, etc., a famous heart surgeon and a crew of doctors believed that she had a wall of some kind to attach a patch and make another chamber.

Our hopes were high, but the prognosis was not that optimistic. To make a long story short, there was no wall at all, and the surgeon attached a patch to the inside wall making it into two chambers. Her’s was a success story, and she is living evidence of his wise decision.

However, had it failed, would we have sued? Had we been different people of more recent times, we might have declared the doctor “fair game.” Isn’t that why doctors and other professionals are weighted down with liability insurance? Isn’t that one reason that doctors are forced to charge larger fees. We expect doctors to perform miracles without our taking any risks. But that is not the issue here.

The issue is that we allow politicians and people in government to hold jobs while declaring that they have no idea what is going on with their personnel. People die, are left with no hope, are beaten, tortured and forgotten by the elected or appointed people who are obligated to defend them.

Yet, when they are confronted, their answer too often is a declaration of innocent ignorance. And they are reelected and reappointed to the positions that they have neglected or admitted that they have no ability to administer. Why are we allowing this or doing this to ourselves?

Maybe suing is not the means to change all of this, but voting and holding them accountable is our responsibility. Doctors swear an oath to preserve life, but knowledge in all areas has not been an all encompassing medical experience. They take a chance to preserve a life and may be sued, and the politician does nothing but plead his ignorance and goes free.

To look at what we have done for our country, we are much too forgiving of incompetence in our everyday political representatives and much too exacting in what we expect of our doctors.

Not many of us will be faced with the need for a very rare decision to be made by a doctor, but we all live in this country, and we need to know that those representing us in one way or another have the ability and have taken the responsibility to do their jobs.

No more lame excuses accepted. Sincerely, Norma Christian Raymondville