This archived article was written by: Cristopher Palo
The presidential elections are only a year away and many hot button issues are being brought up and used to gather votes. One such issue is that of minimum wage. The current federal minimum wage of $7.25 is below the poverty line, but does that mean we should raise it?
Think about some of the jobs that would start a person at the federal minimum wage like fast food and entry-level retail. In my opinion stating that it isn’t fair that a drive-through attendant at Wendy’s makes minimum wage and the CEO of Wendy’s makes millions a year is wrong.
The CEO has gone through years of school paid for, often times, out of his/her own pocket. Works 12-18 hours a day, misses time with his family and has to make decisions that could potentially end thousands of jobs, his/her life is dedicated to this position. The two vast differences should be enough for the wage difference.
For example the state of Washington recently raised its minimum to $15 an hour. The pay raise pushed working people over the line for free housing and food stamps and other government programs to assist the poor.
What happens if the minimum wage was federally raised? The average cost of a burger, fries and a drink is $6, obviously, that isn’t the price of the product alone, but also factors in machine costs and maintenance, workers pay, workers insurance, and a whole spreadsheet of other costs. That price is such because of the federal $7.25 minimum wage. If you raised the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour the price of the food would increase which is ok for the minimum wagers because they are getting a pay rise too but that isn’t necessarily so for those already making above $15 an hour. Their pay won’t be effected by this raise but their cost of living will. The rich will give themselves pay raises and the minimum wagers will get pay raises but still have the same basic percentage of their check going towards the same bills so their raise won’t necessarily help them at all. All it will do is destroy the middle class.
The ones who were worried about it in the first place, now solidify that wage gap that was such an issue. The rich will do what they are forced to do by the government and no more because they want to keep their pockets lined as well. The only people that are affected by the pay wage increase are the middle class and it only affects them negatively. It’s a balancing act. You cannot get something for nothing. Just remember when you get something for free you are taking it away from someone else.