Try to work at the minimum

Christopher Taylor

Republicans should be “pro-family” this election year and vote for the single mom making $5.15 an hour supporting a couple of kids at home.

It’s just a suggestion.

Ohio has the opportunity to do something good this year. People have the opportunity to provide those making minimum wage with a couple extra bucks on each paycheck to support their families. At one point, what seems like half-a-century ago, I occupied a near minimum-wage job that basically boiled down to being terrible labor. I don’t want to bring up grotesque details, but I dug out crap from a urinal in the men’s room on several occasions. So I never really thought that the amount of money I received from the job was enough for what I put up with.

I was actually thrown off when I heard that people existed who actually opposed the increased minimum wage initiative this year. Who do they think they are?

The reason: Conservatives think it will “kill jobs.” I’ve heard these two words so many times with regards to this issue that I felt the need to research exactly what they meant. I Googled “minimum wage will kill jobs.” One survey presented evidence to support findings that between 1948 and 1969, more teenage boys were unemployed after the government raised minimum wage. Unfortunately for that study, we should be talking about income circa now and applying outdated surveys is probably not going to be the most accurate way of evaluating.

What would be more applicable would be what happened in 1999, when unemployment hit an all-time low since 1969 under former President Bill Clinton. Sure, he might have gotten a blowjob outside of wedlock. But he spearheaded raising the national minimum wage to be standardized, while bringing unemployment to 4.2 percent, bringing unemployment for blacks down from 14.2 percent in 1992 to 8.0 percent in 1999. Twenty million new jobs were created under Clinton and Gore. The unemployment rate began to rise in 2001 – just after President Bush was elected. No, conservatives, Reagan did not create new jobs as well.

The real fear: Republican nutcases are scared that this issue will be the liberals’ “gay-marriage,” and will bring out people to the polls who usually would not vote and elect Democrats. I don’t want to dive into the issue of the inhumanity of denying two people who love each other the right to take vows, but considering the popularity of increasing minimum wage, Republicans should absolutely be scared.

In fact, I’m not worried about this initiative passing; I think the Columbus Dispatch poll reflecting that 78 percent of central Ohioans support raising the minimum wage will give Democratic lawmakers a platform to be victorious on.

I point out the words of Barry Bennett, chief of staff for Republican Jean Schmidt, who said, “Not too many people work at minimum wage anymore.” In that case, why does anybody care that much about stopping this initiative?

I would love to see the opponents of this bill clean shit out of the urinal with an ice cream spoon, just like I once did and get paid minimum wage for it.

Christopher Taylor is a senior nursing major and point/counterpoint columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].