The political class loves the idea that they know what’s best. They thrive and survive by convincing the American public that we need them to tell us what’s best. Not only is that totally reverse from the way our government was set up, but it’s also just plain silly. There are two major issues facing society today that have little or nothing to do with the political class: education and employment.
Republicans and Democrats alike will argue about whose “simple 48 step, 978-page bill will raise employment 748% and completely wipe out poverty,” (at least that’s what I hear in between all the mumbling, like the adults in The Peanuts.) But have they ever stopped to think that the people they are supposed to be representing, might have a better, simpler idea that just might work? Of course not. Because if Americans were self-sufficient, and could think for themselves, then what would we need them for?
Employment and education are perhaps the two most intertwined issues ever discussed in politics, yet you’ll never hear any political players word it as such. Education at the K-12 level is so exponentially important in terms of the work force, especially regarding youth employment (ages 16-24). School influences so much of a young person’s life, and is sometimes the only source of guidance a child receives. This can be especially true in inner-city schools, which have the hardest time attracting the best teachers and administrators that will make a difference in their lives.
If the education you receive at the primary and secondary levels are flawed, then too will be your approach to work and all future endeavors. Primary schools should equip you with all the tools you need to know how to learn and innovate. Secondary schools should equip you for life. If we put kids into a flawed education system, that does not build within them these skills, then we should not question a double digit youth unemployment rate.
When you look at it from an employer’s perspective, why would you hire a youth worker, lacking any sufficient education and all work ethic for a position when you’d have to pay them the same rate as a hard-working, experienced, learned candidate? I’d go with the latter every time… unless, it saved me money to do otherwise. In an age where baby boomers and millennials have come together to demand an increase in the minimum wage, I’d like to see it abolished, amended, or lowered.
I believe it would be doing our country, and our children, a big service if we created an education system that prepared them for the workforce. And if we had a work environment that rewarded them for working hard, gaining experience and becoming more learned. This is a duel issue, and has to be handled as such. We need to finally admit that these issues are intertwined and cannot be handled at a federal level.