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Congressman Jim McDermott and Rev. Leslie Braxton addressed supporters who turned out at the Westlake Center rally for health insurance reform last night. Their speaking was more pep rally than informative. There was a moment of tribute to the late Senator Edward Kennedy and his long advocacy for change to the current healthcare system, and a gentleman shared with the crowd his young son's fight with lymphoma and their fears and frustrations in obtaining needed treatment. Listening was a wild coalition of young to aged, socially conservative to progressive, rich, middle class and poor, faith-based and humanist, gay and straight, union members and management, and many ethnicities. Everyone in the crowd, no doubt, had their own story or knows someone personally who has a similar story of worry, frustration, financial hardship, and suffering. It's why they were all there. Across the street was a smaller gathering of people demonstrating their concerns that the US healthcare system not be run by the government or follow a socialized medicine model or dictate who can receive what care when or be used equally by non-citizens in the country illegally. Some had clear contempt for the president. I don't think they want to deny other citizens fair health coverage, but they have concerns they want addressed, and they don't want something railroaded through. Meanwhile, political factions stir up the sloganeering and no one is listening to each other, just blathering on what they hear on talk radio shows. It seems to me if all citizens could unite in holding the congress accountable for getting out of this partisan divide and putting a team of the brightest and best among them to work diligently now on a health insurance reform bill that is thoughtful and addresses the concerns of all the people, eschews party politics and the influence of big money, we would have a win-win solution.