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The article titled, “Raising minimum wage, destroying jobs,” talked about the effects raising the minimum wage would have on the economy. It hypothesized it may decrease the number of jobs rather than increase them. The main point in the article stated, raising the minimum wage would collide with one of the basic laws of economics, which is the higher the cost of something, the lower the demand.
I chose this article because minimum wage has been a big controversy for quite some time now. In my opinion, I think raising the minimum wage would significantly create more problems and fewer jobs for people. People don’t realize how much it will affect the businesses; all they care about is getting paid more. Some minimum wages are not high enough in comparison to the living wages in certain states. But, raising it anymore than $5 at once would not be a smart choice. For example, in Illinois workers were striking for a $15 minimum wage, a $6.75 increase from the current minimum wage. The majority of these workers striking for a minimum wage will most likely end up getting paid nothing, when they get laid off rather than getting paid $15 an hour If it does get passed. Another article I read titled, “What Happened To The Minimum Wage Hike?” stated, Senator Kimberly Lightford proposed a bill that would increase the minimum wage in Illinois from $8.25 to $9 an hour everywhere in the state except Chicago because they are moving toward a wage of $13 an hour. The proposed bill would take effect July 1 and every year on that date. The bill also proposed an increase of 50 cents until the minimum wage reached $11 in 2019. To me, this would be better than just raising the minimum wage to $15 at once because if it is increased a little at a time, we will be able to see the effects it is having on the economy, and there wouldn’t be a big shortage of jobs. Also, the government will be able to decide if they want to keep raising it each year. People in Illinois don’t realize our state’s minimum wage is higher than a lot of states in the U.S. People should be thankful that our minimum wage isn’t the same as the federal minimum wage, which is $7.25. But instead, people are greedy and demand more than what they deserve. The majority of minimum wage workers work in industries like fast food or retail. I have worked in the food industry for about 2 years, and I don’t think anyone I have worked with works hard enough to deserve $15 an hour. People who get minimum wage are generally people who are not very skilled or experienced. If people want to get paid more, they should work harder or go to college to get a degree thus earning a chance to get a higher paying job. There is argumentation that a lot of people who make minimum wage can’t afford to go to college, but that is why there is financial aid; the government will help anyone who can’t afford to go to college.
This article relates to class because we have talked about minimum wage and price control, both of which the article focuses on. The article starts off with talking about price controls when the oil prices rose significantly in the 1970s. People thought selling oil or gas for more than a certain amount should be illegal because it imposed a burden on customers who had few options for transportation. A year later, President Richard Nixon imposed price controls on many prices but by 1974, he lifted most of them. Although, prices on gas remained the same, when Jimmy Carter became president; this led to shortages and long lines at gas stations, which didn’t keep prices from rising until 1981, when Ronald Regan lifted them. The author of this article used gas price controls to relate to low pay for workers, implying that it is a price control on labor. In addition, the article states, raising minimum wage is at odds with the prevailing supply of and demand for labor. If minimum wage is too high, there will not be as many jobs. Effects of raising the minimum wage may not be immediate, but they will occur slowly over time. Businesses will not be able to afford to pay all their current employees, so they will have to cut back on their hours or lay them off entirely. Cities like Seattle, San Francisco, and Los Angeles have already chose to raise their minimum wage. Seattle has already had problems since they raised their minimum wage. Even Seattle’s best known chef, Tom Douglas, who owns 15 restaurants says, he may have to close some of them because of the minimum wage increase. If a famous chef like him can’t make it work, how will small businesses make it work? The article also talked about how many businesses may choose to not hire as many people or use robots or technology instead of employees or they may have to just close. For example, a restaurant may choose to have an automatic order taker instead of hiring someone to take orders.
In conclusion, I think these articles made many good points. I have had a strong opinion on minimum wage, and these articles gave me more reasons to support not raising it so high. When I thought about the effects raising the minimum wage would have on the economy, I always thought mainly about the prices rising as well, but I never really thought of the possibility of shortage of jobs. I would rather get paid $8.25 an hour instead of the minimum wage getting raised to $15 an hour and most likely losing my job because of it. People need to realize the effects minimum wage has on the economy. People striking for a higher wage may end up with no wage at all.
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