When I finished high school, I enrolled in the school of hard knocks. My dad was an alum as was his father, so I was expected to keep the family tradition alive. On my first day of class, I was greeted by an angry man in a Smoky Bear hat. It was soon obvious to me that someone had forgotten to inform him how special I was or that I identified as privileged. He had much to say about me, my family, my hometown, and just what I was entitled to. It was difficult. To this day I believe it was made that way on purpose. Something was said about difficulty teaching me a lesson about life.
Later, because I was privileged, I was able to go to a “real” college. All I had to do was work a minimum of forty hours a week making minimum wage, help raise four children, and take out a loan from my employer. It was difficult. But I can’t say I wasn’t warned. On the first day of nursing school, the instructors advised everyone in the class not to try doing both.
When I graduated, the employer who loaned me thousands to go to school reneged on the pay he promised me. I left for greener pastures, but you know what? He insisted that I pay him back. A judge agreed with him. It was difficult, but I paid for it all. Not one of the five men who were President in those years ever mentioned that it was possible for the government just to “forgive” my debt.
In fact, of the debts, and there have been plenty of them through the years, the government hasn’t offered to forgive a single one—and did I mention that I’m privileged! It is my privilege to help pay for those weeping about how difficult it is to pay back the loans they took out for their college education.
I don’t expect anyone eligible to pass up the money. The insanity behind the “forgiveness” is not on the recipients of it. What galls the hell out of many of the alumni of Hard Knocks is that the recipients feel they are entitled to the money and should be spared life’s difficulties.
In hopes of deflecting any further anxiety in those entitled to attend a university, here’s a soothing poem that’s also nonsense.
Ignore the Loanerwock, my son,
The terms that bite, the debts that catch!
Ignore the Workwork bird, and shun
The hoary Repaycatch!
Sorry, Mr. Carroll.