Often, regardless of the reach of this new media, those voices are not heard at all.
The rise of social media has enabled people to speak out when they have a grievance. It also allows our politicians and government officials to set the agenda, to propagandize, to inform and to reach the public without the “bias” of the media.
Our Louisiana governor, Bobby Jindal, appears to have used the Internet as well as anyone.
I receive his frequent emails which he uses to highlight his accomplishments, his pet legislation and his politics.
This morning, when taking a web cruise I came across a Facebook page entitled "Bobby Jindal, government official".
There was nothing different from what I had been expecting. It displayed the normal pictures of his friends and his accomplishments.
As a scrolled down the page, I came across a post that appeared rather odd.
The post is from Joey Sanders Falgout who as described on the post is a student at UNO.
Above it, states, “Posts by my friends about Bobby Jindal”
Hey Bobby Jindal, if I wanted you to get Medicaid to review my case again for the 16th time, I would have asked for that! I need help getting prosthesis, not being told by some Medicaid hack "what you wrote the Governor is exactly correct" because I already know that!
I am sorry, but I'm as mad as hell, and I can't take this anymore! I get no reply to my e-mail for almost a week, then to have someone call to tell me I was correct, that I am totally screwed, is a slap in the face.
Anyone else in the Amputee Coalition of America have this issue? Disability makes me have too much income for medicaid, can't get medicare yet, premiums too high to buy insurance myself, and my spouse's work won't allow me to be covered there. Stuck with no way to get prosthesis! I am forced to use a wheelchair when my sheer determination is enough to know I would be able to walk with the equipment that is just out of my reach.
My friends and family are trying to convince me to hold fundraisers to try to get my prosthesis, and it breaks my heart because I am embarrassed to have to ask for the help. I paid the over $1,000 a month for health insurance when I was able bodied for DECADES, and end up with no way to get it when I need it. You think I want to be forced to resort to Medicaid? You think it was easy for me to go hat in hand an apply for it, or food stamps, or watch helplessly from a nursing home bed while my family bounced from place to place because I put making money ahead of my health?
I've been fighting the red tape, the insulting attitudes of the case workers, and endured the long waits to get treatment in the LSUMC Interim Hospital because I want to get back to some semblance of normalcy again. I can't do that from a wheelchair.
Sorry for going on a rant, but this was not what I expected as a response from my e-mail to Governor Bobby Jindal.
Falgout’s post has been up on the Facebook page for months and has not been removed.
After reviewing Mr. Falgout's plea, something just did not add up. Why would Governor Jindal or staff allow a post that appears to be so critical of him to remain on his Facebook page for such a long time?
Then, why not? After all, Governor Jindal is government transparency personified. He and others often tout his “Gold Standard” ethics legislation that has provided to him rave reviews around the country.
Well, kinda of. Others, take issue. They claim that the transparency does not apply to him or his office at all citing examples of administration officials refusing to comply with requests for information under a veil of executive privilege that some legislators insist was never contemplated by the 2008 legislation.
But, still, even assuming that the governor is the epitome of openness, I asked myself, why would he allow a Facebook post that reeks with such anger and an emotional appeal that does not appear to put him into the best of lights.
After scratching my head and doing some further googling, I believe I now have the answer.
Here is the governor’s “Official” facebook page.
I do not know if Mr. Falgoust has received the help he has requested. Nonetheless, let us hope that he has been served. After all, despite the noise and the bad roads we read about on social media and the electronic informrtion super highway, sites like Facebook indeed have the power to be the face of those who need a friend or friends at their very times of need.
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