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Columbia Missourian

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Preserve Social Security and Medicare

By Joan Wilcox
January 5, 2013 | 6:00 a.m. CST

I understand that there are many items on everyone's political agenda that need discussion. However one that should concern us all is what too many people call entitlements — Social Security and Medicare. These are not entitlements. They are paid for by the people. If we fail to provide for seniors and their health care, our society will not survive as the nation we want it to be. We are a nation that cares about families and their well-being.

When my husband passed in 2007, I financially lost all I had — a house and a small farm. I had only my Social Security and Medicare to depend on. I fell from the middle class into poverty. If not for Social Security and Medicare, I would not have been able to make a new start. After five years, I am now buying a house, volunteering on important social justice issues and ready for my new life after 70.

My husband passed nine days before my 65th birthday. Thank goodness I did not have to wait for Medicare or Social Security. Changing these programs would adversely affect every family in America. We should save and improve these programs.

I am a success story. I paid into Social Security and Medicare all my working years. I paid for it — I benefited from it. I am now more than ever convinced that we need these programs.

If we invest in our country by creating jobs in infrastructure and clean energy, we will have income for these valuable and necessary programs.

Joan Wilcox is a resident of Hallsville.