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Minimum wage is not civil and doesn’t teach

In Saturday’s Letter to the Editor, Mark John Hunter said in part, “Keeping a low minimum wage is not civil in substance.”

Having a minimum wage law is not civil in substance by any stretch of the imagination. I can’t think of any other law that does more damage to the education of our children than the minimum wage law.

As I write this, somewhere in our fair city there is a 12-year-old who hopes to find some spending money. If it weren’t for the minimum wage law, he’d wander into a local barbershop and make a deal to spend an hour after school taking out the trash, sweeping the floor and other simple tasks. For this, the barber would give him a dollar.

The kid’s education has begun.

He learns to be on time, to do the job right the first time, relate to adults, and be rewarded for his efforts. That first buck. It’s his. Nobody gave it to him, he earned it. The positive impact of that experience will live with him forever.

By the end of the week, the kid’s confidence is up and he is ready to take on additional responsibilities. He gets to run errands, wash the big front window, etc.

By the end of the second week the kid figures out that he has sufficient time to his day to work for two barbers, thus doubling his daily income.

As time goes on, the kid advances thru a series of jobs, gaining additional experience and knowledge so that by the time he reaches 18 he has a well rounded work ethic and a favorable reputation that just about guarantees he or she will have a well-paying job waiting.

I know this from personal experience.

The minimum wage is uncivil.

Robert W. Thompson

Alpena