Here’s a thought for you to chew on: financial responsibility. When is the right time to teach it to your children? When is the right time to learn yourself? It would seem as though in this day and age, more than half of Americans do not understand financial responsibility, which has helped lead us to the road of financial ruin that we’re steamrolling down as we speak.
Did you know that only four states make it a requirement to take a class on fiscal responsibility or a class that teaches “economics” in order to graduate? How is that possible? How is it that what’s supposedly the greatest powerhouse in the world requires nothing of the sort? We’re said to be the land of the free and prosperous, but we’re bogged down by debt and bad mortgages because we didn’t know what to look for when we signed those documents that were left unexplained. And let’s be real, the person servicing that bad mortgage had no intention of ever telling us that it’s actually a terrible idea to sign it.
It’s so essential at a young age to learn how to manage your money properly instead of having to learn the hard way. It’s not just about having a fiscally responsible budget but planning for the future. How many people in the 18-25 range actually know what a Roth IRA is? Chances are, not many. But at age 21, if one were to put in the minimum balance of a mere $50.00 a month, and not touch this fund until age 65, they would have garnered up $280,000 at just the bare minimum requirement. And none of this is taxed by the U.S. government. Yes, that’s right, if all the requirements are met for this, when the money is removed, it cannot be taxed under U.S. law. A retirement fund that you will actually see. We all know none of us will ever see our Social Security money that most of us pay into every month. You can say adios to that. But a Roth IRA is just one of the many options you have, to save for a future.
What about student loans? How many of us that are now into our 30’s still owe tons of money? No one taught us about that either. And no one showed us the array of thousands of scholarships and grants available instead of heinous student loans. Today, the only way to find out about that is by asking your counselor, if, that is, you can get an appointment. And that’s the flaw of it all. Schools are so overcrowded and our education system has been so overrun and rundown that the priorities have become misconstrued and lost. The basic important fundamentals vital to survival in this day and age are getting completely forgotten.
How many of us would love to buy a home or car? Loans with interest, APR, low down payment, all of it is foreign to most college aged students and even many middle-aged adults. Fancy words and numbers are accompanied with going to a car dealership or a bank to take out a loan. Many people don’t realize that they can shop around for loans and easier financing. But many still won’t know about any of this because the education system has failed.
In the state of California it is required to take four years of a history in order to graduate. Instead, why not take three years and then an additional year of the history of why this country is failing miserably? Is it because we cannot take care of our education system or fight for our future or know how to survive in the real world? So many of us graduate high school and jump right into college without so much as a thought to fiscal responsibility or a know how to balance even a minuscule checkbook. Then reality sets in, leaving many scared and lost.
We rely on the education system to teach us the skills not only to survive in school but in the real world as well, and now, our education system has failed. We are not faring much better in the department of helping ourselves succeed. How can we if we don’t fight for what we need to survive or even care until it’s too late? We can’t go running back to mommy and daddy for help because chances are, the education system failed them 30 years ago and they don’t know much more other than what they learned the hard way through the years.