In response to Elliot Epstein’s column (April 12) expressing his relief that Bernie Sanders has suspended his campaign and pitting Sanders’ supporters under age 45 against Baby Boomers (like myself), here are some thoughts:

The math that Epstein excoriated Sanders for clearly shows that there is no longer a profit for insurance companies to grab out of health care — not if we wish to provide health care for everybody. Working on reducing the drivers of increased health care costs (for example, by eliminating tax subsidies for health-wrecking fast food chains) is in no way ruled out by removing insurance companies from the picture. Likewise, bringing higher education costs down would not be impeded by eliminating the profit center of private student loan companies.

Maybe older people are more susceptible to the fear that Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor described recently in a column in the New York Times: “The fear of falling even further behind [that] disciplines people to expect little and prepare for even less,” which explains “the disconnect between people’s professed support for Bernie Sanders’s proposals in polls and their decision not to vote for him in the primaries.”

Donald Trump wants to eviscerate the ACA. Joe Biden, Angus King and Sara Gideon think tinkering with it is good enough, even when the current pandemic threatens to end the employer-provided health insurance of millions.

We deserve better than this, but we won’t get it by continuing to settle for ineffective conventional solutions and pitting 30-year-olds against 70-year-olds.

Renee Cote, Auburn

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