Ad campaign aims to scare college students about Obamacare

September 20, 2013
Generation Opportunity's anti-Obamacare 'Uncle Sam' mascot
Generation Opportunity’s anti-Obamacare ‘Uncle Sam’ mascot

A Virginia-based youth organization with financial ties to the right-wing billionaire Koch brothers has launched an ad campaign to scare college students about Obamacare so much that  they “opt out” of the health-care law and don’t sign up for health insurance.

Generation Opportunity issued a press release Thursday about its $750,000 campaign that said:

Generation Opportunity, a national, non-partisan youth advocacy organization, is launching #OptOut, a digital and grassroots campaign designed to highlight alternatives to expensive and creepy Obamacare exchanges.

What’s actually creepy are the video ads, including one titled, “The Exam,” (see video below) which shows a young woman going into a doctor’s office for a gynecological exam and ends with a scary-looking “Uncle Sam” showing up between her legs, holding a speculum. The obvious suggestion: the health-care law forces invasive exams on people. The male version of the ad is called “The Glove,” (see video below) and shows a young man in a doctor’s office apparently about to have a prostate exam when the same creepy “Uncle Sam” figure shows up and this time, puts on a glove.

Actually, Obamacare doesn’t force invasive exams on people. Ironically, it was Republican lawmakers and the governor of Virginia who pushed out a law last year that requires all women who want to have a legal abortion to undergo an ultrasound first. The initial proposal called for transvaginal exams but an uproar in the state forced the legislators to walk that back and mandate less intrusive ultrasounds.

This Yahoo! News story quotes Generation Opportunity’s president, Evan Feinberg, as saying:

What we’re trying to communicate is, ‘No, you’re actually not required to buy health insurance.’ You might have to pay a fine, but that’s going to be cheaper for you and better for you.

Along with the ad campaigns, the group is planning to distribute  literature and anti-Obamacare paraphernalia on college campuses.

Under the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, most adult  Americans starting will be required to have “minimal essential” health insurance coverage, starting Oct. 1. Other parts of the law have already been implemented, including a provision that allows young people to stay on their parents health insurance plans until age 26. Obamacare doesn’t tell doctors how to treat patients.

College students are, presumably, smart enough to see through the ads.

 

Valerie Strauss covers education and runs The Answer Sheet blog.
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Valerie Strauss | September 20, 2013