Opinion: All Americans Should Want to Protect Social Security

Walter Rhein

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Imagine you work hard all your life. Imagine if every time you’re paid, your employer takes out some of your compensation and puts it in a retirement account.

You work for years and years. Slowly, that account builds. It’s your money. Every penny in that account was earned by your time, knowledge, skill, and effort.

Finally, you get old enough to start drawing payments from that retirement account.

Then, one day, a rich politician decides that you should no longer get your money. He starts calling it an “entitlement” even though you worked for it all your life. He cuts the program leaving you with nothing.

This isn’t a fantasy, this is actually an issue in modern politics. Modern politics has come a long way from the era of Ronald Reagan who once famously emphasized that Social Security does not contribute to the deficit.

Why then is the party that claims to revere Reagan constantly proposing cuts and radical changes to the program?

I feel that coming after your Social Security is no different than taking money right out of your bank account. If you have elderly people in your life, they likely rely on Social Security to get by.

If the government wants to cut something, why can’t they cut the free money they hand out to rich people for doing nothing?

At some point, the American people have to stop and think about what’s going on for a second. Everybody always talks about people who work for a living, but nobody seems to really care about those people.

If you care about people who work for a living, why aren’t you in favor of raising the minimum wage?

If you care about people who work for a living, why are you complaining about quiet quitting?

People need to wake up. Everyone is complaining about inflation, but nobody is complaining about record profits for massive corporations.

A lot of people like to brag about how they work hard, but if they turn around and attack Social Security then I don’t believe them. People who work hard deserve social security. That’s their money. It came out of their paycheck.

There is always a conflict between employer and employee. If you’ve ever owned a business, as I have, you see that payroll is one of your major expenses. One of the easiest ways to increase profit is to cut employee benefits. Maybe the voting public should think about this a little more when they idolize wealthy people.

What we’ve seen in America over the last few decades is a greater and greater squeeze on working-class people. Housing costs more. Healthcare costs more. Education costs more. Food costs more. Gas costs more. But wages remain the same.

Now they want to cut Social Security too?

Don’t believe the lies that Social Security is not sustainable. All the government has to do is eliminate the wage base limit and then cap the payout. That way people making hundreds of thousands of dollars on the hard labor of people working for them would pay in more than they receive.

But of course, no politician is going to propose this because they seem to care more about rich people than working-class people.

Americans can’t afford to be deceived on the subject of Social Security. It’s a good program that helps working-class people and it has been under attack for decades. If we allow changes to Social Security, it’s possible that you’ll never be able to afford to retire.

Never forget that Social Security is your money. It's not an entitlement. You worked for that money. Don’t let anyone steal it.

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Walter Rhein is an author with Perseid Press. He also does a weekly column for The Writing Cooperative on Medium.

Chippewa Falls, WI
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