Michael Sasser

My Voice

About the author

Michael Sasser, 69, is retired and lives in Enterprise. He is a member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers and American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees. My Voice columns reflect the views of the author only.

My Voice columns should be 500-700 words. Submissions should include a portrait-type photograph of the author. Authors also should include their full name, age, occupation and relevant organizational memberships.

We edit submissions for brevity, grammar, taste and legal reasons. We reject those published elsewhere.

Send columns to La Grande Observer, 1406 5th St., La Grande, Ore., 97850, fax them to 541-963-7804 or email them to acutler@lagrandeobserver.com .

We are all born into this world with potential to be the best we can be. Some of us are born with a silver spoon in our mouth and others are born to struggle for a meal or a place to sleep.

The struggle is not equal. Those with that silver spoon sometimes think they are born of privilege. There is a price we pay for this life we are given. The price is very costly for some, but the price is paid by all.

Now we could isolate ourselves from life and try to negate the pain and suffering in this world or we can face the world head on, knowing there will be pain but also knowing that we can help bring joy into people’s lives and help ease their suffering. We bring a puppy home knowing that someday most likely we will endure the loss of that precious puppy. We pay the price for that love.

We endure the grief. Unfortunately, sooner or later we all have to suffer the loss of someone we love. That pain is not avoidable no matter if you are born with that silver spoon or not. We are all in this journey called life together. We are all one diagnosis away from terrible suffering. When a fellow human being is suffering then we all suffer because we care. People care. It is our responsibility to help those who are suffering.

There are people who care deeply and have a special calling to help the suffering in the world. People become doctors and counselors and ministers. People become nurses, paramedics, teachers and many other professions because they feel a desire to help. We can all do something to help the less fortunate. We can all do something to help ease the suffering in this world.

As Congress debates the real possibility of taking health care away from 23 million Americans we can speak up. We can write and call our congressmen and senators. We have a voice at the ballot box. We can make a difference. The ultra-rich are trying to buy our government.

They hand out money to our politicians and expect Congress to do their bidding. They have become experts at fooling people. They can fool people, but one thing I truly believe about the American people is that we are a caring people.

We can be our brother’s keeper. We can ease the suffering. We can help. We must pay the cost of easing the suffering.

That is the price of admission.