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Should Minimum Wage Be Raised?

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Should Minimum Wage Be Raised?

Minimum wage has always been a controversial issue. Many politicians use the argument of minimum wage for their own political propaganda. Some may argue minimum wage should be raised, while others believe it will have detrimental effects on our economy if it is raised. Surprising to most people, minimum wage earners make up only a small percent of American workers. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, minimum wage workers make up about 2.8% of all workers in America. “The majority of minimum wage workers are between the ages of 16 and 24. These are high school and college students” (Sherk 2). But high school and college students are not the entire percentage of minimum wage earners. When minimum wage is raised, it affects the entire economy in many different ways.

First, raising minimum wage affects the amount of job availability. Many businesses will reduce their amount of employees, because the business will not be able to afford to pay all the employees and still gain profit. As a matter of fact, James Sherk, a Bradley Fellow in Labor Policy, states “Businesses will not hire workers whose labor produces less than the cost of hiring them” (Sherk 2). On the other hand, Holly Sklar, a director of Business for Shared Prosperity, states “Contrary to what critics predicted when the minimum wage was raised, our economy had unusually low unemployment, high growth, low inflation, and declining poverty rates between 1996 and 2000” (Sklar 4). The problem with this statement is Sklar states that inflation was low, which is not the case now. Inflation is rather high, and unemployment is lower than ever. With every minimum wage increase in the past, inflation has also risen. Since minimum wage affe...

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...inflation arises which causes the cost of living to increase. Every solution people seem to offer to resolve the issue of minimum wage all seem to point towards the rise of unemployment. Minimum wage increases do not actually benefit the poor, as implied by politicians. In reality, minimum wage increases only help the middle class. The economy is in the middle of a deep recession. The government should not implement a minimum wage increase in the middle of a recession. Even those who support minimum wage should be able to realize that if the minimum wage were to increase right now, it would have detrimental effects on the economy. Cook states “I would rather see the labor markets get a little stronger before it’s raised again” (Cook 2). In the middle of a recession, minimum wage increases will only slow our nation’s recovery. Should minimum wage really be raised?
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