Glorious St. Joseph, model of all who are devoted to labor, obtain for me the grace to work in the spirit of penance in expiation of my many sins; to work conscientiously by placing love of duty above my inclinations; to gratefully and joyously deem it an honor to employ and to develop by labor the gifts I have received from God, to work methodically, peacefully, and in moderation and patience, without ever shrinking from it through weariness or difficulty to work; above all, with purity of intention and unselfishness, having unceasingly before my eyes death and the account I have to render of time lost, talents unused, good not done, and vain complacency in success, so baneful to the work of God. All for Jesus, all for Mary, all to imitate thee, O patriarch St. Joseph! This shall be my motto for life and eternity.
Pope Saint Pius X, son of a tailor
My Old Man would have loved Mike Rowe:
Off the Wall
Yesterday, I posted an article that dared to question the universal wisdom of pushing everyone toward a four-year degree. The article reached 3 million people, and not everyone was pleased…
Dawn Baker wrote, “Is it your intent to make those who choose college to feel ashamed, lazy and brainwashed? Our country’s education system is under attack, and you seem to be supplying more ammunition to those attacking it……There’s a reason many of these jobs pay well – they are truly HARD WORK – physically hard. Dangerous hard. Mentally hard. Feel free to send reps to the local unemployment office and brow beat them to send people to these jobs. Whether you mean to or not – your are sending a very bad message to those who want to destroy our higher education system.
You’re right – our countries educational system is indeed under attack. But the attack is from within, and the wounds are self-inflicted.
Yesterday, they installed a “Cry Closet” at The University of Utah, where students feeling stressed-out over finals can clutch a stuffed animal and bawl their eyes out in private. https://bzfd.it/2HYu7pB. Last week, Ranga Jarrar, a professor at Fresno State, called Barbara Bush a witch and a racist the day she died, then bragged to the world that her tenured position meant that she could speak without fear of consequence. https://dpo.st/2vTSrUI. Meanwhile, Berkley just banned another speaker with views and ideas their students find “objectionable.” Or was it Yale? Hell, who can keep track anymore?
Point is, Dawn, the hypocrisy in our educational system is rank, the bias undeniable, the disrespect for our flag ubiquitous, and the entire “safe space” mentality the exact opposite of what life is like in the real world. Higher education has created its own PR nightmare. Is it any wonder parents are trying to figure out if their kids should be sent into such a lopsided environment? Is it any wonder reasonable people are beginning to question the value of a four-year degree?
Tuition has increased at two and half times the rate of inflation. Nothing else this important has ever done that. Not real estate, energy, food, even healthcare. The question is why? Is the quality of education two and half times better than it was thirty years ago? No way. Are universities turning out more graduates? Hardly. Fifty percent of those who enroll don’t even graduate. Do people have more disposable income today than they used to? Of course not.
No, universities have been able to raise their prices partly because too many parents believe that anything less than a four-year degree will doom their kid to a less productive existence, and partly because we’ve pressured millions of kids to borrow whatever it takes from a bottomless pool of unlimited money that doesn’t really exist. The result? One and a half trillion dollars of student debt, 6.3 million jobs that no one wants to do, and millions of college graduates who can’t find work in their chosen fields – but lack the skill to do the kind of jobs currently available. The kind of jobs you deem, “hard work.”
To answer your question, Dawn, no – my intent is not to make those who choose college feel “ashamed, lazy or brainwashed.” My intent is to remind people that a university is not the only place to enrich your mind or prepare yourself for the real world. Nor is it necessarily the best place. It’s merely the most expensive. Other options exist, including those offered through my scholarship fund. Please feel free to apply, should your position at Oregon University ever vanish. Or, should you one day conclude that work is not the enemy. Mikeroweworks.org/scholarship.
PS. This is a short but excellent video from a graduate of Haverford College, who sums it up better that I. Enjoy!
Go here to read the comments. Hands down my job all though high school, washing dishes and scrubbing floors at the local country club, of which my parents were not members, in Paris, Illinois, prepared me more for adulthood than anything I learned in high school, as did my jobs while going to college and law school. Learning to work with various people whether I liked them or not, showing up on time, working hard at tasks not intrinsically interesting, growing respect for the men and women who earn their daily bread by the sweat of their brows, these, and a hundred other benefits, I acquired from the jobs that, in hindsight, were so very much more precious to me than a paycheck.
My late Father was a non-church going Protestant who believed firmly in God. He had an enormous respect for my mother’s Catholic Faith, had no objection to my brother and me being raised Catholic and never, in my presence, uttered a word against the Catholic Church. When it came to the value of work he and the Church were on the same page:
Every one knows, too, that no nation has ever risen out of want and poverty to a better and nobler condition save by the enormous and combined toil of all the people, both those who manage work and those who carry out directions.
Pope Pius XI, May 15, 1931