Washington, D.C. — The administration’s ambitious plan for health pack reform continues to stir up controversy and has divided the nation seemingly down the middle. The proposal includes provisions to provide free health packs not just to lone heroes on world-saving missions, but also to average citizens such as taxi drivers, bartenders, merchants, prostitutes, farmers, security guards, helicopter pilots, priests, and even scientists who stand around forever fiddling with some vague bit of technical equipment without ever actually fixing or activating it.
Some herald the plan to provide health pack benefits to all citizens, and not just to heavily muscled heroic commandos on top-secret missions, as the mark of a more responsible society. Many others feel threatened by the reform, wondering just who will truly benefit and who will be hurt.
“I mean, where does it end?” one gruff, sardonic hero asked while rappelling from a helicopter to the rooftop of a skyscraper that had been seized by a battalion of cloned super-soldiers. “Why should everyone get free health packs? Heroes are the only one who really need them. I’m the one infiltrating this skyscraper, I’m the one who will be clearing its rooms and hallways of heavily armed clone commandos, I’m the one who will be haunted by horrifying visions of a demonic little girl with hair in her face.”
“Looks like they were expecting me,” he muttered grimly, as he landed on the roof and began spraying bullets at attacking enemies. “Anyway, where was I? Oh, yeah. You start giving free heath packs to office workers and hot-dog vendors and soon there won’t be any left for me. And I’m the one who needs them.”
“Look, we’re not asking anyone to take health packs away from space marines or reluctant saviors of the human race,” one construction worker said, wearing a hardhat and carrying a lunch pail as he walked back and forth between a construction site and his truck, over and over again. “They clearly need them, what with the overwhelming odds and lack of effective cover systems they encounter. We’re just asking that normal people be given access to health packs too.”
“The average citizen won’t be spearheading an attack on a fascist regime or battling through a post-apocalyptic wasteland,” said another construction worker, who looked and sounded identical to the first. “But we still live and work in those places. We still take damage and lose health, not just from mutated boars or inter-dimensional demons, but often from the very heroes who are purportedly there to save us. ”
He waved his lunch pail at a group of pedestrians walking in circles around the construction site. “Who among us hasn’t taken a stray bullet from a hero’s gun, or been hit by a car the hero was driving, or taken splash damage from a hero’s grenade? Sometimes I even think they hurt us deliberately. That’s why we need health packs.”
Despite conflicting opinions on the matter, the impact of the new plan is sure to be felt by nearly everyone, especially health pack manufacturers such as Heal-U-Kwik Industries, who has been leading the charge in opposing the new health pack legislation.
“As the nation’s largest supplier of health packs, heath kits, heath vials, stimpacks, med-kits, medpaks, syringes, syrettes, healing stations, mediguns, bandages, and painkillers, Heal-U-Kwik Industries stands in direct opposition to this new plan and the damage it will cause,” a Heal-U-Kwik spokesman said.
“We have a hard enough time as it is turning a profit,” he continued. “Our business consists of distributing free health packs throughout war-torn urban environments, and sometimes even to other planets and dimensions, for brave lone heroes to use at no cost to themselves. If we have to provide health packs to absolutely everyone, it will destroy our already poorly thought-out business model.”
Some are quick to point out that many societies have successfully made affordable health benefits available to all of their citizens, such as the underwater city of Rapture, founded by industrialist Andrew Ryan. In addition to various snacks and beverages containing healing properties that are scattered throughout the city, health stations in Rapture can be used, for a small fee, by anyone, be they lone protagonists with shadowy pasts, or insane, mutilated splicers who scream profane gibberish while crab-walking across the ceiling.
“I think the system here works great,” said one of Rapture’s splicers. “I honestly don’t know what all the fuss is about topside. I think a society should provide some sort of health pack benefits for its citizens. Here in Rapture, I can use the health stations if I really need to, and I’m profoundly grateful for that. There’s even a way to get around the fee if you’re clever.”
“SEMEN! SEMEN ON EVERYTHING!” she added, scuttling backwards up a wall.
The elite government operative invading the clone-occupied skyscraper isn’t convinced, however, and feels he never will be.
“Next thing you know, all of my enemies will be able to pick up health packs, too, making them much harder to kill. Soon, heroes won’t be able to enjoy the benefits of free, instantly healing health packs because someone else will already have used them.”
“So, next time the country isn’t saved from the threat of evil, mind-controlled clone soldiers, don’t come crying to me.”