War of the Words

Get a job, hippie!by Alicia Johnson

Rent is high, gas prices are unbelievable, kids need to be fed, and bills have to be paid. Our economy has made it almost impossible for one to get an education and enjoy the benefits of a degree. If you are a college student, chances are you’re broke and struggling to find the balance between school and work. At that, chances are; even if you have a degree: you may also be broke. For some, college after high school is unrealistic because everyone has different socio-economic standings. A lot of people abandon their dreams of college for money. Realistically, many know there is no personal satisfaction in working; day in and day out in a low paying, dead end job. But when it comes down to it, we all know it is impossible to have one without the other. Students find themselves deprived of sleep, grades suffer, work suffers, and we are stuck in a confused frenzy. Work or School? School or Work? I’m not saying don’t go to school, work instead. But some people don’t have the luxury of doing both. Most college students are working while they go to school in order to afford a higher education. Getting caught in the nine to five rut is easier than some may think. Most jobs provide a constant flow of income, and this income allows comfort. That comfort can become addictive, thus leaving students to accept a skimpy paycheck over an education. Work does more than just give us money; it helps us to live and support our families. For some students, money is just one problem on a long list of reasons not to attend college. College can be a tedious journey. It requires financial support, as well as support from family and friends.Coming from a family of parents and grandparents that never attended college, I realize the importance of school and how it will benefit my life in the long run. But I also find myself torn when I am smacked with a cell phone bill or a hungry belly. Parents are eager to kick their children out into the real world the day after their eighteenth birthday. College or not, you must learn how to survive. That survival may very well be spending the next four years in college, but that survival might also ensure that you have a place to sleep at night. It is no guarantee that you will get a job after college, it is possible that your degree will spend the rest of it’s life hanging freely back in your old bedroom. So why wait till after college to get a bad job? Skip debt, paying for books, long add lines for classes and parking permits. You’ve already accomplished a big goal by graduating from high school. Next step, get a job and work your way up to management.

Don’t be a fool, stay in school!By Kyle Chidester

We live in a world driven by capitol. In order to make capitol grow, you must previously own capitol. There are two main ways to create initial capitol; either start at a low end job, like working at a restaurant, grocery store, or hotel, and work your way up. Or, go to school to acquire the resources that will get you a better career. While many people end up taking the first route, I urge you, as a fellow wage slave, stay in school; it’s a lot better in the end.It’s been said that someone who graduates from college with a degree is guaranteed a salary of at least 20 to 30 grand, while someone in a dead end retail job won’t make more than ten to 15. If you do the obvious math, you see that staying in school is a much better option. The end result is a more pleasant life with security and substance.College can be a lot of work, but is slaving away for $9.50 an hour, 40 hours a week, really that satisfying? This shouldn’t be a question of survival or necessity, but one of personal happiness. Unfortunately, our society has created a place where to make it through school alone we must work to eat and to have a place to sleep. We even have to pay for our education, for the resources required to complete a course: books, paper, pens and pencils, scantrons and blue books. These things continue to add up. We begin to struggle to stay afloat. Then what usually ends up happening is the struggling student feels like they are forced to drop out of classes or school altogether, because it’s just another expense to them. This is what our society has done to the art of learning. Our economics have turned education into a burden. The drive to gain more, has lead us to absorb less. We lock ourselves into jobs and lives with no possible future in sight. The concept of true advancement is a myth being batted around retail offices. In two years, I’ve gone from humble barrista to shift leader to store manager, and all I have to show for it is a card with my name on it (Would you like one?). I could have made those cards myself and have it say emperor of the universe. But still, both are just as imaginary. That’s what capitalism does; it makes us imagine we have real lives. It paints this pretty picture of what we could attain, as long as we finish all our work first. A really amazing punk band, 1905, said it best, “… put off your dreams for another day, you’re too busy for them right now.” We’ve been trapped in this system of greed, hatred, and loathing for too long. I want to see a world that supports and encourages an education. I want to see people bustling inside the halls of school buildings, excited to learn and grow. Grow their resources, not their capitol.