All his life, he has tried to emulate the example of Nelson Mandela, the former South African president who ended apartheid and was buried Sunday. Burns dedicated his Sunday service at Rising Sun First Baptist Church to memorializing Mandela and encouraging people to sign up for health insurance under theAffordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, which Burns sees as a crucial initiative, especially for the poor and uninsured.
For him, the connect is simple: He likened those fighting against the health care law, aimed at providing insurance to everyone in America, to those fighting “tooth-and-nail” to hold onto segregation and apartheid.
Congregation members ended the service singing “We Shall Overcome” and signed a book of condolences that will be sent to the Mandela family via the South African embassy. A group called Pray at the Pump urged folks to sign up for health care as “the best way to honor Mandela,” said to Rocky Twyman, a member of both the movement and the church.
“We especially targeted young people,” Twyman said, adding they will be the ones who will decide whether the program is successful.
Burns said it’s still an issue of the haves and the have-nots.
That’s right, Obamacare opponents are the same as segregationists and those who came up with apartheid. I shouldn’t be surprised if a Democratic legislator and minister said this generally. However, Burns is a bit of a surprise since he has consistently voted for pro-life measures in the Maryland House of Delegates going back to 2006. Burns is pushing Obamacare despite the fact that it includes federal funding for abortion.
Quinton is a native South Carolinian who has lived in Baltimore since 2006. He is a recent convert to the Catholic Church and is active in the Knights of Columbus. He has been involved in the pro-life movement nationally and locally since 2010.
Quinton is a veteran who served as an intelligence analyst in the Army National Guard. He is also an Eagle Scout.