Last week after reading about Florida's new budget cuts, I could only see the waves of impending suffering pounding down on the state's most vulnerable citizens.
The Florida Department of Elderly Affairs then fired Brian Lee, who was the director of the state ombudsman program, which investigates complaints against assisted living facilities (ALF's) and nursing homes. As a former volunteer ombudsman and nursing assistant myself, I have seen first hand the harm done to the elderly when there is no one to hold these facilities accountable.
For a recent editorial by current ombudsman Pam Anderson, click here and scroll down to the letter entitled "Facilities need watching".
That's one of the challenges of fighting the good fight: the little guy often loses when pitted against massive Goliaths backed by big business, money, media, and power.
As a sensitive individual (and I know lots of us are out there!), some times I wish I could either turn off my need to care so much. Or at least finally fill that Xanax prescription I was prescribed long ago.
But I don't want to feel less, I want to be empowered and do more. Work more efficiently. But unless you do that kind of activist work every day, it's easy to lose focus or focus on failure.
Which is why I interviewed Hannah Sassaman last week for 88.5 WMNF. Here's a gal who has made it her job to fight the good fight against corporations who want to own everything and deny the public airwaves to the public. She spoke about how everyone can be an advocate and activist, and addressed some tools, like grass roots lobbying.
We have so many options as citizens: we elect our representatives, and we have to tell them when what they're doing is not in our best interests. The worst thing to do when you're having a bad day is to do nothing at all.