Sunday, September 26, 2010

Surprised I have the mental fortitude to post about today.

It was a sucky, sucky day in the ER. I euthanized 6 patients. It's not a record, which is sad.

The recession was recently declared "over." I am not seeing the effects of this in our clinic. Quite the opposite seemed to be true today. Granted, I work in a very small, very poor mill town in central NC. Many people didn't have money BEFORE the recession, and now with lay-offs and unemployment on the rise, the situation is even worse. It's a very frustrating and sad position to be in.

On the one hand, it breaks my heart to have to euthanize a 3 month old puppy for a badly, badly fractured leg. His very young parents (a married couple of 19 and 20, respectively) could barely cover the cost of coming into the ER (although I did note that the girl has a nicer smart phone than I do...). I want to help them. I want to help the dog. I want to not have to worry about the cost of the health care I'm offering their dog.

On the other hand, I look at the lack of responsibility running rampant in our country, and I am ashamed and angered. This girl had an iPhone, sleek and new. I know that the contracts on those phones run $100-250/month depending on the service. I know the phone itself runs about $200 (as I just opted to buy a smart phone recently - though I ended up with a Droid X).

That money could have been spent on a cheap cell phone and the rest put away in savings. Yet, this 20 year old is already in so much debt from making bad financial decisions that she couldn't qualify for a CareCredit card. I want to help them, but I want them to help themselves as well and take responsibility. Don't leave your young puppy outside, unsupervised. It's a simple as that. Put money aside in savings for emergencies - not just pet, but any emergency. Don't buy stuff you can't afford. Certainly don't buy stuff you can't afford with credit cards.

What is wrong with this country? Since when did owning every single gadget and fad and having everything become so important that people were willing to throw away credit for it? It is rare that I meet someone that has real savings or a plan for what happens if they need a large sum of money quickly for an emergency. Along with that, people have an enormous sense of entitlement - it's MY right to have free health care for my pets, it's my right to have everything. Our government is doing nothing to discourage this mentality either. Taking from the taxpayers more and more, spending recklessly and shadily - money going who knows where? I plan on abstaining from voting come November because ALL of the politicians are the same - Democrats, Republicans, it doesn't matter. All pay lip service to one ideal or another. What they really want is to be in power and to stay in power. Nothing else really matters.

Our government was supposed to be by the people and for the people. Now it's by the people, for the government. And what real option do we have? I'm always told that we are to blame for electing these people. What choice do we have? You can only run for president if you're independently wealthy (read: millionaire) - otherwise, your chances of a serious campaign are nil. All politicians are the same, and I think we could do without them.

Is it any wonder are country is in this mess? We elect politicians that throw our tax money away. We live in unparalleled wealth that the people in my generation never had to earn in any way, and thus value it significantly less than they should. We've never earned the wealth we have, it was earned for us by our forefathers -by those who fought in World War I and WWII. And now, this luxury is commonplace. We all expect to have 2 TVs and 2 cars and own a house by the time we're 22. It's our GOSH-DARNED RIGHT!!!!

Meanwhile, I have to keep euthanizing animals that could be saved with a minimum of effort and care...

Ok, wow. That wasn't supposed to be rant. But there it is.


Elizabeth said...

You tell it! I was reading something the other day where the author was lamenting that our nation's credit lending levels haven't recovered since the recession. The assumption is that we cannot properly recover until we go back to the way things were.

Well, maybe we need to start something new so we don't repeat the same mistakes. Maybe we live within our means. Maybe we take a huge loss on housing prices and because we're not borrowing like crazy fools, the houses don't increase in value faster than salaries rise for awhile.

Karen W said...

I don't know how you do it. I would die having to euthanize a puppy with a broken leg due to owner negligence. And yet I understand - you can't save the world's poor pet population who suffers because the owners are idiots.

I was in my vets office once and some people brought in a sick kitten who had apparently ingested some yarn and it got twisted up in the intenstines. I overheard the conversation between the vet and the family, who didn't even want to pay to euthanize the poor animal, but would rather have simply let it suffer and die a slow, painful death. I was stunned. I wanted to offer to pay for the surgery, but like you, can't save the world (and I'm not a vet either!)

Hugs to you and sorry you have to see this side of humanity.

Elizabeth said...

Most young people heading off to university expect to have more to take with them than I had when I got married.. We didn't buy anything we could not pay for, it was that simple. I think much of it is that fact these young people never really worked for anything and have no clue what money really means. There are a lot of people out there who are going to be facing a very tough wake up call at some point.
The sad thing is the young couple probably did not learn anything and will probably have another pup they cannot afford by week's end.

Holly said...

I could not do your job. Could not. I understand and back you on the decision but honest to God, I could not have held my tongue and it's important in your line of work that you do. You have my deepest admiration for all the hard decisions you make every working week.

and as for our country? The sense of entitlement will simply have to stop one of these days. We cannot continue down this road of giving everyone who wants a handout everything they ask for.

The Homeless Parrot said...

Thanks guys. I wasn't sure how this post would be I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one that feels this way!

Anonymous said...

Yes, there many things which are wrong about our country, but isn't the correct response to exercise our responsibility to vote? To be informed and make the best choices of those offered to us? To do otherwise is to throw up our hands and quit, and there is too much at stake. You are a fighter, and there are many others like you. You are the ones who have and will make this country great.

The Homeless Parrot said...

Thanks make a good point. My grandmother did also, when she sent me a pointed email about the fact that her mother and grandmother lacked even the RIGHT to vote. Fodder for thought. I was only halfway serious anyway. I will probably vote.

Michelle said...

You hit the nail on the head. A post everyone in America needs to read. Good job.