Cutting from the wrong places

Getting a college degree has become more and more important in the 21st century.

It has pretty much become the equivalent of what a high school degree meant for previous generations. To get a decent job a college degree is a must because we are seeing increased specialization in our workforce.

If the U.S. House of Representatives gets its way, getting that college degree may become more difficult for millions of potential scholars. That’s because the House is set to vote soon on a bill, H.R, 609, which is part of the federal budget reconciliation process.

According to the St. Paul Pioneer Press, the bill would cut nearly $15 billion in higher education programs.

Basically, the Bush administration hasn’t managed its finances very well and now it needs to find ways to get the budget back on track.

The Northern Star feels that meeting this objective by cutting student aid is not only not in young Americans’ worst interests, but also the interests of our nation as a whole.

First, the aid cut would keep many Americans from being able to attend institutions of higher learning. Low-income families would lack the tools necessary to send their children to said institutions. These families need to hear their government is not making any changes to student loan programs, if not raising the amount of money allocated to these programs.

They need these funds.

Second, fewer people attending colleges and universities cannot be a good thing for this country. If the United States is serious about being at the forefront of education and science, it should be doing all it can to help its citizens become educated. It should not be shutting the proverbial doors to education by cutting the amount of money delegated for helping scholars.

The bill has drawn heavy criticism from Democrats, and with good reason.

Maybe if the United States weren’t pouring billions upon billions of dollars into a war that was supposedly already won, it would not have to make these cuts.

Maybe if the country stopped sending useless spaceships into orbit it would not have to cut student aid. It is shameful that the government’s priorities seem to be in outer space and on a silly war in the desert thousands of miles away instead of on its students.

Let’s leave it to Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-Texas) to wrap things up. He was quoted in the Daily Texan as saying, “It is irresponsible to shift the burden from the wealthiest taxpayers to the students who need help the most.”

Indeed it is.

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