Debaters from the Tufts Democrats, Tufts Republicans and Tufts Young Democratic Socialists of America answered questions on current political topics in the ASEAN Auditorium on October 26. During the hour-long event, students from each group discussed national health care and student debt policies. in the “Triple Threat Debate” hosted by Tufts Cooperation and Innovation in Citizenship.
The first question posed to the first panel of three debaters was whether or not they believed health care was a basic right. Freshman Alex Wahl answered for the Tufts Democrats.
“Tufts Democrats believe, and we’re not afraid to say so, that health care is a basic human right,” Wahl said, calling disparities in health care access and coverage “d dystopian idea that we morally reject”.
“If the other parties at the table can’t say definitively and unconditionally that health care is a basic human right, then there’s just a fundamental difference here,” Wahl said.
Junior Matt Lohmann of Tufts YDSA argued for a single-payer health care system.
“Health care is a basic human right,” Lohmann said. “We have the ability to cure most people, and there’s just no good reason why we aren’t, except for the sake of corporate profits.”
Senior Andrew Butcher answered for Tufts Republicans.
“Moving to a single-payer model is definitely a solution,” he said. “I don’t think it’s the best solution, because [the] the government is generally not good at these large-scale solutions.
Butcher added that he didn’t like the idea of ”giving the government the ability to essentially dictate what a good standard of care is,” citing Congressional Republicans’ concerns limiting abortion coverage.
The CIVIC moderator of the debate cited estimates that 90% of health outcomes in the United States result from factors unrelated to health care. Debaters were then asked to offer solutions to improve Americans’ health outcomes beyond insurance.
YDSA’s Lohmann responded that not having to deal with “external anxieties” such as climate change, restricted access to abortion, and lack of voting rights “would improve people’s well-being. many people”.
Democrat Wahl has suggested more gun regulations to protect children in schools.
“We need to talk about the things that impact people’s health care at the root,” Wahl said. “Abortion and access to contraception are two things that we Democrats are laser-focused on protecting.”
He believes that being against abortion and access to contraception are two positions “diametrically opposed to the idea of improving health outcomes in America”.
YDSA’s Lohmann responded that not having to deal with “external anxieties” such as climate change, restricted access to abortion, and lack of voting rights, “would improve the well-being of many people”.
Butcher and Lohmann both pointed out the flaws in the government’s promotion of exercise and diet, noting in particular the political influence in the creation of the food pyramid and the MyPlate model. Lohmann advocated for regulation of the food industry to remove preservatives from Americans’ diets.
The final topic covered by the first round of debate was the mental health crisis in the United States and the role government should play in addressing mental health issues.
Wahl and Lohmann both pointed to a shortage of well-paid social and mental health workers in the public school system. Wahl linked this issue to his earlier call for gun regulation.
Wahl said there had to be a way to ‘ensure that, if there is someone who is mentally unstable, their arms can be taken temporarily until the mental health crisis is resolved’ .
Butcher agreed that the United States is currently suffering from a mental health crisis, saying the government’s current solutions “are not great”. He did not offer a specific plan to fight the crisis.
The second round of debates focused on student loans and debt cancellation. Tufts YDSA was represented by senior Seth Gordon, the Tufts Democrats were represented by second student Spencer Miller, and the Tufts Republicans were represented by second student Trent Bunker.
Gordon from YDSA was the first to speak. He called for the cancellation of all student debt.
“In 22 countries around the world, free public education is not a dream but a reality,” Gordon said. “Millions of students, just like you and me, go to school every day, go to college every day, and pay $0.”
Gordon went on to elaborate on the issues surrounding the cost of higher education in America.
“In the United States, we have a backward system where college is prohibitively expensive for millions of people,” Gordon said. “At the end of the day, what we need in this country is free public education, a total cancellation of all student loans and price caps at private universities to prevent hikes. prices and soaring debt.”
Miller said Tufts Democrats support President Joe Biden’s recent student loan forgiveness plan, in addition to regulating the universities themselves.
“We would like to require universities to use a certain percentage of their endowment each year or cap the amount of money that comes into the university and goes directly into the endowment,” Miller said. “They created this problem by raising tuition, and they’re going to help the feds solve it.”
Bunker has strongly opposed Biden’s loan cancellation program.
“Injecting this money into the economy will force the public who have never gone to college … who have already paid off their debt, to pay for the risk taken by these individual borrowers via the hidden tax of inflation,” said Bunker.
Bunker cited models suggesting Biden’s plan will cost more than $500 billion over the next ten years.
“However, one solution that the Republican Party…has backed is an income refund system, which…assesses future income prospects in the situation and gives these loan companies the skin of the game, which they don’t have. not at the moment,” Bunker said. .
#Tufts #Dems #Republicans #Democratic #Socialists #Triple #Threat #Debate #Tufts #Daily