(Printed in the Exponent under the title "A Lesson I learned over the summer that you can't learn in School".)
This summer, I learned lessons one cannot receive in the classroom.
This summer I worked several different jobs. When I worked as a telemarketer, 25$ were taken out of my first check for the company head set. 15$ were taken out of my second check for the company shirt which I had to wear to work every day. If I wanted to have anything to drink during 6 hour shift, I was required to buy the company cup, which cost 5$ out of my first check as well.
We were paid a commission, but the commission changed every week, and even then there was a complicated mathematic equation to figure out what the commission would be. There were lots excuses to not give your commission, everything from calling in sick to wearing the wrong kind of shoe.
I had another job, in which I was a good employee, and did everything I was expected to do, but I was laid off. The company could no longer afford to keep me employed, as the market went up and down.
The point of this article is not “woe is me”. I am fine. I have parents who can support me when I need them, and for someone my age, I am doing all right. But the point is that I am not everyone.
What if I was like most of the people at the telemarketing job? What if I had didn’t have the privilege that comes with being white, male, and having parents with college degrees?
We here at Baldwin-Wallace college are very lucky. We are attending a good, four year college. But not everyone is as lucky as we are.
We live in a society in which things like job security, healthcare, and quality education, for a large number of people do not exist.
Even for the middle class it is slipping. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 1,221 mass layoff events in the month of July alone. 47 million people in the U.S. have no health insurance.
The system of capitalism cannot offer the security we need. The chaos of an economy with no planning is affecting millions of people every day. I say we abolish it.
I say we build an economy meant to serve the needs of people, rather than the needs of profit. Yes, the summer has passed, and I am still a Communist.
REPRINTED WITH THE PERMISSION OF EXPONENT CAMPUS MEDIA
Monday, October 1, 2007
The Real World of Capitalism
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