The student loan problem is uniquely problematic for Millennials and Generation Z. Many of them cannot find a job, afford to move out of their parent’s home or pay their student loans.
No wonder a self- declared socialist, Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren, might be the next democratic presidential candidate. Both Sanders and Warren have proposed a student loan forgiveness plan for these disgruntled and disenfranchised millennials. Young Americans love Sanders and Warren because they are offering them a solution to the student loan crisis. Who wouldn’t want their $200,000 in loans forgiven?
Unfortunately, the Republicans have offered no solutions or plans to the student loan crisis. In fact, most Republicans say former students must pay off their loans and don’t even act like this is a huge crisis or a major issue in the election. The problem is these students cannot just pay off their loans because they have no jobs or money to do so.
Republicans like to blame colleges for not preparing these students for actual jobs available in the workforce but the blame game is not a solution. Moderate Democrats are in the same boat as Republicans because they have not offered any solutions as well and keep losing elections to Socialists. Just take a look at the political group called “the squad,” who beat several moderate Democrats promoting a socialist agenda offering free stuff as well as student loan forgiveness.
Americans believe that college is necessary for career success but this is in fact not the case. There are several high paying jobs that do not require a college degree. College tuition keeps rising each year faster than the rate of inflation. Americans need to hold colleges accountable for this absurd and detrimental increase in the cost of education. Politicians and the media absolutely should shine a light on the fact that college is not essential for success.
Just because it is easy to take out a loan for college, much like it was easy to get a home loan prior to the financial crisis of 2008, does not mean everyone should be taking out college loans. The media, colleges and politicians are doing a huge disservice to our community by not profoundly addressing the student loan crisis.
Republicans and Moderate Democrats must come up with a plan on student loan debt and forgiveness if applicable. Solutions can include tax incentives to encourage companies to help pay student loans held by their employees. Further, if young Americans post college serve in the military, there could be certain forms of loan forgiveness.
In addition, Republicans could come up with a plan for government employees much like the initiative Ivanka Trump has supported with Paid Family Leave, were you can borrow against the money you put in for social security to help pay for your loans.
Republicans must present a solution to the student loan crisis that is affecting a staggering number of young Americans. No wonder many Millennials and Generation Z are supporting candidates like Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren who are presenting solutions to their most debilitating problems. Several young people are worse off than their parents were at the same age for the first time in American history.
If Republicans want to make a difference and be the party for all Americans, then they better act fast. Fixing the student loan crisis and providing solutions for wealth creation for our youth could propel us into the next Golden Age and the 2020s really could be the next roaring 20s for Americans.
Meghan McNulty is an attorney, political commentator, and biomedical engineer based out of Southern California. She is a frequent commentator on national television and radio programs across the country.
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