Minimum wage during the season of giving

Anderson is a senior political science major from Cumming. He is currently writing a thesis about U.S. interventions.

Elijah Anderson

The Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays afford a moment of reflection and thankfulness. We ignore our differences and we join hands nationwide forming a choir of millions to sing a tear-wrenching rendition of “Kumbaya” followed by an immense outpouring of charity and love for our fellow man. Yeah, right.

Nowadays, the holidays are a blood sport, a season to open our wallets and waste thousands of dollars on material items. After all, nothing embodies the Christmas spirit more than trampling over the guy next to you in line for that brand new PS4. What a sickening display we put on each year the day after Thanksgiving, the day we feign thankfulness for all we are granted, only to wake up the next morning and nearly kill another human being for a discounted laptop.

Fortune favored the brave this year, however, as I happily learned there were no deaths and only a few stabbing, shooting and trampling victims scattered amongst the floor of your local Wal-Mart. Receiving little to no attention during the holidays, however, are the very mortal souls who are forced to put up with the antics of bloodthirsty shoppers during the holiday season; minimum wage retail and fast food employees.

In Georgia, the minimum wage employers are mandated to cough up is a measly $7.25. While $7.25 may be enough for a teenager, it is nowhere near enough for an individual trying to feed a family. Consider a single mother of two employed at Wal-Mart at the $7.25 rate, if she was to work a full 40 hour work week, she would take home $290 a week or $1,160 a month. Considering the median rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the U.S.A is around $950, it doesn’t take a genius to realize $1160 isn’t going to cut it. Also, factor in utilities, clothing, gasoline, school supplies, groceries, etc. The list goes on and on!

But, what really grinds my gears is that the people so opposed to raising minimum wage are the same folks who decry the individuals on welfare and government assistance programs as leeches on society. They are content with leaving those unfortunate few miring in the cycle of poverty with no aid and mock them as parasites. And then they have the audacity to assert I am supposed to feel sorry for the multi-million dollar CEO, “The Almighty Job-maker,” having to pay his employees a little more!

Inflation has raised the cost of living. Minimum wage must be raised to accommodate those individuals reduced to such wages. It’s the season for giving, no? How about the gift of an adequate amount of pay for a sufficient standard of living? Until next year, “Merry Christmas ya filthy animals.”