Thursday, June 7, 2012

Ray Penney - only in America

Mr. Penney is a well known and highly regarded guitarist and performer/entertainer.  His presence has graced the East End for a long while and we are better off for him.  Mr. Penney is also very, very ill with leukemia.

Peconic Bay Winery is hosting a benefit for him tomorrow night (the 8th of June at 6pm).  The first reason should be for everyone to "pony up" to say thanks for what you brought to us.  The real reason is that Mr. Penney's illness has depleted bank accounts and created hardship.  The performers for this event are all good and it should be well worth going to on the music value alone. That you could be doing something to help out is the icing on the cake.

A few decades ago, one of us was in Stockholm, Sweden for work and the stay was extended.  As bad luck would have it, a short stay in the Karolinska Hospital was called for and when check out came, our friend was presented with a bill for 100 kroner, about $8.50 back then. 3 days. $8.50.

We mention this in regards to the partial title of this thread; "only in America".  The observation is correct that of the major industrialized and perhaps civilized nations on this earth, only in America would someone have to have a benefit concert to help a contributing citizen lessen the stark choices between treatment and food/shelter for his family.

"Oh, but it would cost too much" is the expected outcry.  But the question would then remain that creating a situation where "health care VERSUS food/shelter" costs us a lot more. Infinitely more.  It costs us our moral compasses and our souls.

Go enjoy the music. Do a good thing. Thank Peconic Bay for stepping in and helping out.  Until Washington "Comes to Jesus" as the saying goes on this, the community who has enjoyed the fruits of this man's labors is all he and his family have.

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