Joyce’s shutdown vote marks a contradiction

Although it is nice gesture on Congressman John Joyce’s part to give up his pay during the shutdown, considering that he voted “nay” on the House bill to re-open the government and that he has the financial resources to tide him over until the shutdown ends, this gesture seems very empty.

It is especially so because, as a doctor, Rep. Joyce took a solemn oath to “Do no harm,” and yet even as a rookie congressman, he must or should know that the FDA inspects about 80 percent of all of our food and our prescription drugs, as well.

And yet, since the shutdown began, according to the FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, “All FDA inspections have been suspended.”

This fact makes the simple act of eating food and taking your prescriptions literally taking your life (or your family’s lives) in your hands, risking illness or death with every pill, piece of food or glass of milk.

Joyce knows this, and yet he voted not to end the shutdown and re-open the government, according to the Congressional Record on the Congress’ website.

And all for a border wall that is not a real deterrent to either documented or undocumented immigrants. Numbers of both have been going down for several years now and are at a low point, so that for the last two years we have not had enough people willing to harvest our crops, leading to large quantities of the food our farmers produce spoiling and rotting on the vines and bushes and in the ground, and of course, higher food prices for fruits and vegetables, and anything made from grains.

Also, those 800,000 government workers must still work, but not get paid, and unlike Joyce, they do not have enough money to pay for food, rent or mortgage payments, or car payments.

They will start going hungry and start being evicted, their cars repossessed.

Also, those who need food stamps to put food on the table, and the greatest number of those on food stamps are white, middle-class citizens, according to government statistics, also will go hungry.

So, for someone who made an oath to “Do no harm,” as all doctors do, even though he is now in the political arena, Joyce is engaged in doing harm to millions of people, some of them perhaps your husband, wife or child.

Frances Hugg

Hollidaysburg

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