I would like to tell a true story about a woman named "J," whom my wife and I got to know over a period of several years.
J worked as an animal control officer, employed by a city in Florida. When a raccoon came into our yard and attacked our dog, J caught it and confirmed that it had rabies.
This meant our dog "Lucy" had to be quarantined for six weeks. J would stop by each week to make sure Lucy was not showing any symptoms and that we were not taking her anywhere.
We also contacted J when a baby squirrel fell out of a tree and a coral snake came into our back porch. In each instance, J did her job with compassion for the animals and the people that she encountered.
We liked her.
When Lucy finally died of old age, J offered her sympathy and said she would be glad to help us find a new dog. She came to us with an offer of a mature dog, but we were not yet ready.
That weekend, J committed suicide.
As it turned out, J was seriously ill with cancer. The city she worked for had made a business decision to change their health insurance carrier, and J's cancer was a pre-existing condition that they refused to cover.
She had decided to kill herself and wanted to find a home for her dog before doing so.
No one is claiming that the Affordable Care Act is perfect, but if it had been in effect at the time, J might still be doing the job she loved.