Fearless Questions

Following our Questions to Freedom

Episode 12: Michael Milligan Talks Healthcare in America

Have you ever known someone who has faced bankruptcy?  If you have, did you know that there is a 60-70% chance that it started with a financial crisis rooted in healthcare expenses…AND that approximately 70% of those people actually HAD insurance when the crisis started.

I can hear it now….Jeff…Why are you talking about bankruptcy and healthcare

(Glad you asked 🙂 )

For me, healthcare has traditionally been something that I categorized under the file of bills and obligations…always more expensive than I wanted it to be…and really just a complicated chore that I was forced to deal with…especially while raising 3 kids.

When I worked for a financial corporation…health insurance wasn’t quite as complicated.  There was a human resource department that handled most of the choices for me.  But for most of my adult life, I’ve been in situations where I was forced to choose my own individual health insurance policies…and even as an educated adult it was usually quite daunting. 

On a broader scale, our nation has been locked into a conversation (ok…well, maybe more often it’s just been a fight) over the type of healthcare system that we utilize. 

It’s been a Democrat vs. Republican battle…Bush vs. Clinton, Obama vs. Republicans…and on and on.  For many of us…just hearing the name ‘Obamacare’ triggers emotional reactions.  For some it’s a feeling of genuine hope taking root in progress for all, while for others it’s a flashpoint for government involvement in a part of their lives they’d rather be left alone.

But make no mistake…it’s an issue that all Americans are being forced to reckon with…and we all have an interest in solving it.

Historically, my faith has played very little role in my support for any particular healthcare system.  But lately that has changed for me.  For instance…I had rarely doubted my belief that it’s reasonably moral to expect all children to have the opportunity to receive an education in America.  Why then, is it not just as reasonable to expect healthcare for all Americans? 

Healthcare is about people after all…and last I checked…people were at the center of God’s heart.

My guest today is Michael Milligan…an accomplished Juilliard trained Broadway actor who has dedicated much of the past few years of his life advocating for health reform in America.

Michael has written and performed two powerful one-man plays that share some of the real-life consequences of a healthcare system that can be relentless in it’s devastation of people’s lives and livelihoods.  Michael has the unique experience of having traveled the country and spoken to people from all sides of the aisle and industry when it comes to healthcare and it’s reflected in his story.  One of his biggest surprises along his journey is that most people actually seem to agree on most of the main ideas regarding healthcare.

One of my favorite things about Michael is that his ultimate driving goal is for every American to be taken care of…regardless of what system we all agree will work best.  He’s advocating for people…and that’s someone I can have a conversation with!

Today’s conversation might be an easy one to dismiss as more political fodder…but I promise you, this is exactly the kind of conversation that I have been looking to find for years.  Someone who isn’t in it for themselves, but who also has studied and learned enough to help give me space to discover what I really think about all of this.

And even for all of us that currently have health insurance…you’ll hear Michael share today that…”often times your health insurance is something like a parachute that somebody else packed for you and sometimes has a hole in it that you don’t discover until after you’ve needed to open it.” 

My hope when you listen today is not that you find the perfect solution to healthcare in America…but what I do hope you find is space to reflect on what the issues are surrounding healthcare that will guide the conversation for you moving forward.


Here are some of the links that are mentioned in the conversation today:

Short Trailer for Mercy Killers the Play:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k8NX9XLNuCg

Full-Version of Mercy Killers the Play (appx. 1 hour long):  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0pvCXkHDVc

Poor Box Theater (New Website): http://www.poorboxtheater.com/ 

About Jeff Blackburn

Jeff Blackburn is a Spiritual Coach and passionate Truth-Seeker. An alumnus of Oxford University, Jeff is someone who advocates for Freedom and Fullness of Life for All. He believes Jesus offers good news for people everywhere today…not just eternity. Jeff is the Executive Director of Fearless Questions, Inc. and has spent the past 20 years working with people searching for God.