Dropping student debt

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Dropping student debt

Marissa Pekular, West Hills Center Student

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As America ascends into the 2020 presidential election, some prominent candidates have proposed controversial plans that would affect every college student. Democratic politicians, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, have entered the race for next year’s election, both promising to reshape higher education by eliminating some of the country’s massive student loan debt.

Ms. Warren’s plan, in particular, would cost $1.25 trillion. Warren explained that she would pay for this plan with the revenue generated from increasing taxes on the wealthiest families and corporations in America. Her campaign estimates that it would take over 10 years to raise $2.75 trillion.

As well as eliminating undergraduate tuition at public colleges and universities, Warren would expand federal funds to aid students with other college-related expenses such as books. Also, she would eliminate up to $50,000 for every student with an income of less than $100,000 while forgiving a portion of the debt of borrows who make between $100,000 and $250,000.

“Going to college shouldn’t result in a lifetime sentence of student debt, but that is exactly what is happening and it’s only getting worse,” said Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers. “Senator Warren’s plan would release Americans from their debt sentence so they can live their lives, care for their families and have a fair shot at the American dream.”

Many students and families who are crippled with unforgiving debt are in favor of this proposal, however, its adversaries are unwaveringly against it. Conservatives call this plan unrealistic and a burden to the upper class tax payers. Fox News host Tomi Lauren explained, “Why should I and other tax payers be burdened with paying for someone’s women’s studies degree or their philosophy degree or whatever degree they have that’s not going to turn into an actual job or an actual income.”

Although this resentment is true for many, as a nation, we must reshape the American values that were once commonplace for many, but are now a privilege for some. Warren’s proposal sheds light on the impossible debt students across the country face. Her ideology and intentions are admirable and true- every person should have access and ultimately the right to higher education. However, Warren and other politicians should refocus their plans by lowering college and university tuition costs through regulations, rather than individually aiding students’ massive debts.

If higher education was more accessible for every American, students would not find themselves in as much debt in the first place.