I wasn’t raised in a household with a lot of money. In fact, I was raised by a single mother. I don’t want any sympathy for that. My mom is the hardest working women I have ever met, and she instilled work ethic in me in the same way she did other values she wanted me to learn. She taught by example. Living in her household, I learned that nothing is free, work is hard, you get what you earn, life is not fair and you pay your bills.
I took those lessons with me to the University of West Alabama where I signed my name on loan agreements for student aid to help finance the tuition costs that were not covered by my football scholarship. When I graduated, I went to work and I paid that student loan bill each month just as I paid my monthly cell phone bill, rent payment, car payment and car insurance. Those loans were mine. I signed for them. I took the money. I deposited it into my account, and I spent it. It was my obligation to pay it back in full and that is exactly what I did. It wasn’t easy and I would certainly have rather spent that money on something else, something more fun, but I knew right from wrong. My mother made sure of that.
Now, President Biden wants to “forgive” student loan debt to make life easier on adults who don’t want to fulfill the obligations they made when they applied for, accepted and spent their student loans. The economic calamity associated with Biden’s decision is obvious, but the impact that this “forgiveness” program will have on the future of this nation can not be calculated in dollars.
Biden is sending the message to Americans that your word does not have to mean anything. Your signature on a legal loan document can be ignored and then “forgiven.” You don’t have to work hard and do without luxury items until your bills are paid anymore. Take that money you were supposed to spend on your student loan payment and go pick up the latest iPhone instead. Treat yourself to a nice dinner or a vacation you didn’t think you could afford. Then just sit still and wait for the government to step in and “forgive” your debts.
Biden is sending a message to the waitress working two jobs and saving money for her tuition that her hard work means nothing. She should have just taken out loans that she knew she could not afford and then waited for Biden’s magic pen to “forgive” that debt.
Biden is also sending a message to the men and women who chose the military as a way to finance their college aspirations that their sacrifice to this nation was not really worth anything at all. After all, the civilians who didn’t choose the military path are having their debt “forgiven.” How will we ever forgive the debt we owe those who have volunteered to fight for this nation and to defend us against our enemies with the promise of a college education in return? Biden does not care.
People are taught by example, and our nation’s young people are being taught that hard work doesn’t matter. Sacrifice isn’t important. Loans don’t really have to be paid back. Biden is teaching the next generation to do what they want, borrow money to pay for it, and then wait for “forgiveness.”
May God forgive us all for what is happening to this country.
Rep. Scott Stadthagen is an elected Repulican representing Alabama’s House District 9.
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