GENERATION WAR: POLITICS, JOBS, POVERTY
The opinions expressed in blog posts are those of the author and not necessarily those of YouthFacts.org
Age-Race-Gender Split in Midterm Vote Augurs Well For Progressives by Mike Males. The midterms sharpened the confrontation of rising younger and Color America versus aging White America.
American society has gradually learned that disparaging remarks against an entire social group comes freighted with social liabilities – accusations of misogyny, racism, xenophobia, homophobia, anti-Semitic, ableism. And rightly-so. The one group, however, somehow never included in this learning trajectory has been, and remains, our own young people
Republican health care plan bribes older voters by tossing young people under a Mack Truck. The Affordable Care Act forced young people to subsidize the artificially capped premiums of older ones, but it at least had some compensations for poorer young people. The new GOP plan by candidate Scott Walker would result in a massive shift of tax and insurance premium costs from young to old with little compensation.
My Brother’s Keeper. When the government truly wants to reduce poverty among an important population, it spends the money–$650 billion in 2012 on Social Security for the elderly, for example. When the government doesn’t care much about rampant poverty among an unimportant population, like youth, it leaves it to private tokenism, like President Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper initiative: churches, volunteers, mentors, and “consultants and firms.”
Education cutbacks, student debt: The real generation war The defunding of education and skyrocketing student debt so that older, wealthier Americans can enrich themselves with tax cuts is a true “generation war.”
The Minimum Wage movement disowns teenagers. Ignore politicians’ and lobbyists’ pious concerns about teenagers and increasing the minimum wage. All sides are distancing themselves from teenagers (our poorest age group other than children, and one which would also benefit from a higher wage), preparatory to throwing them under the bus yet again.
The Obama-endorsed “Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act” discriminates against the young. There’s no reason why an otherwise qualified individual should be rejected or paid an arbitrarily low wage just because of young age — and more than a woman or minority individual. So, why do so-called “fair pay” laws explicitly allow discrimination against young workers with qualifications equal to those of older ones?