The 99% that could save America
Before I begin my criticism of the Occupy movement, let me point out that I am an under-but-greatfully employed recent University graduate with a mountain of debt, way more debt than the average college graduate. And while my parents and I take full responsibility for taking it on, there was behavior conducted by the banks I landed from and the university I attended that I would have changed. For starters, I wouldn’t have just given an 18 year old several loans at $10,000 to $20,000 a pop without finding out what he planned to do after University. If I worked for the university, I would have given the prospective student a realistic outlook on what they could potentially earn based on the history of their alumni after graduating from the university to help them figure out if paying the tuition required to attend would be worth it in the long run.
But that is all water underneath the bridge. And that is my chief criticism of the Occupy movement: you cannot change history. It’s happened whether you like it or not. If the heart of my generation is with the Occupy movement, we need a very serious wake up call. We cannot control that as we entered the work force the economy crashed. We can’t control the fact that it’s better for business to employ people with way more experience. We cannot control the fact that we took out a ton of student loans, many of us irresponsibility, and now the banks want their money.
We cannot control it. But there is something we can control. To me it an absolute irony that the Occupy movement uses the phrase, “We are the 99%”. Because the solution to our problem is actually found in that number but in a different context.
Thomas Edison, a brilliant American inventor once said, “Genius is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration.” In other words, ideas are fun, but it’s hard work that makes things happen. We can DEFINITELY control this, whether it’s in the job we’re in now or it’s coming up with an idea and making it happen through the hard hard work that’s required.
If these Occupy people put just a fraction of the energy of what they’re doing into actually contributing positively to society, America would be a much more prosperous place than it is now. So I propose, my generation embrace the Edison 99% principle instead of the Occupy 99% principle.