At a time when so many see America’s healthcare system as failing us, from its corporate decision-making to its unaffordable drug and insurance and hospital costs, it is sad to see how easily we can end up protecting that very system.

Corporate millions dumped into the “No on 1” campaign are doing their best to dupe voters into believing that more nurses, more jobs with good pay, better hours and humane working conditions that improve patient care is unreasonable and nothing more than “union greed.” Ironic that “Yes on 1” is cast as the “enemy of the people” and “No on 1” that protects corporate profits is cast as sacrosanct and inviolable.

As much as the national mid-term vote this November, this vote is about what we want America to be in the coming decades: a society divided and weakened or united and healthy. We don’t need to be experts. We just have to know what we want for our country and vote for it.

And a little truth about unions: they arose as a way for people to organize, to voice and represent their concerns and needs. With their rise in number and power following the Roosevelt and post-World War II era, union demands in fact created the middle class.

Since Reagan’s era of union-busting and greater protection given to the corporate “bottom line,” we’ve had decades of wage stagnation and fewer promising, good paying, secure jobs for our children and grandchildren. McJobs, part time and underemployment now boost employment figures, but with depressed wages.

No coincidence that just as organized successful demands to improve lives is on the rise, those demands are disparaged as impossible, too costly and corrupt, even as corporate profits soar. Yet across our country, teachers, hotel workers, McJob holders and now our own state’s nurses know better.

More than sentiment, creating an America dedicated to the care of its people can only come from voting for it. This ballot question gives us that power. And beyond party labels, if we want to build a kinder and more unified America and a better future—not only for ourselves but for our children and grandchildren—we need to vote for it.

Say no to looking out for corporate profits and a worsened future. Vote Yes on 1.

Lillia D. Frantin, Old Main Road, North Falmouth

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