This man, James Verone, robbed a bank for one dollar. Why only one dollar? Because he knew that in prison he could get the medical care he could not afford with his part time salary as a convenience store clerk. He was approved for food stamps, but they did little to help his finances. Between his back problems, carpel tunnel, and arthritis, he simply couldn’t handle the pain any longer.
On June 9th, he sent a letter to his local paper, the Gaston Gazette, that stated: “When you receive this a bank robbery will have been committed by me. this robbery is being committed by me for one dollar. I am of sound mind but not so much sound body.”
He then took a cab to the RBC Bank, and handed the teller a note asking for one dollar and medical attention. He quietly took a seat in the lobby and waited for police to arrive.
Since Verone only stole one dollar, he was only charged with larceny. His bail, which he doesn’t plan to pay is set at $2,000, reduced from the normal $100,000. He’s scheduled to see a doctor this Friday, and hopes to get foot surgery, back surgery and to have a protrusion on his check treated.
To me, this is the perfect example of how disturbingly corrupt and unjust our health care system has become under HMO’s. For this man, or any person for that matter, feels that he needs to be imprisoned just to see a doctor, is ridiculous.
This is exactly what I hate about America. Why is it that you can buy an entire house with money you don’t have, but still can’t apply for health care if you don’t meet the requirements? That’s messed up.
Reminds me of how I got myself intentionally kicked out of school the second time. The first time was unintentional, and actually came asa result of mental health breakdown. After the first incident, I had to wait in jail for several hours until my parents could pick me up, was under house arrest for several weeks, and then I was suspended from school and had to go to an “alternate education facility.”
Alt. Ed. is where your pregnant girls and teenage drug dealers go to wait out the system until they turn 18 and get dumped from it. Education there is “self paced” ie. you get a stack of homework to hack through on your own, and access to tutors if you want to talk to them. No lessons, very little structure.
For an extremely intelligent Anxious-to-the-point-of-diagnosed-OCD introverted young person, this was heaven.
So when we moved to a new town and a new school and I found myself unable to cope with the pressures of socializing with the usual bunch of idiot high schoolers… with cold calculation I sat down and wrote a graphic description of how I would torture and murder my classmates, and calmly handed it to a teacher. One meeting with the principle later, I was back in another Alt. Ed. facility, happy as could be.
I got to do an entire semester’s homework in the space of 3 weeks, and spent the rest of the school year fiddling with computers and painting. If I’d had a little more initiativen, and maybe a little more oversight, I might have gotten more AP credits, or gotten involved with some extracurricular projects that would have actually benefitted me.
Anyway, the point is, one man’s punishment is another man’s freedom.