Under the current presidential administration, the federal government has enacted policies that claim to help the middle class. In actuality, they are hurting it. From Common Core to the Affordable Care Act, the current administration is expanding the income gap, evidenced by marketing patterns that are developing a class system which is more divided than it has been since the 1970s.
Marketing is a good indicator of what is happening in the homes of Americans. Grain prices are dropping and the nationwide livestock industry is experiencing an inventory decline. As a result, the food industry is in flux and meat prices should be on the rise across the board.
The media will tell you that some fast food providers are marketing meat at a much lower price than their competitors. For instance Burger King is marketing Chicken Nuggets for 15 cents a piece and McDonalds is charging 25 cents each. So while those who may be struggling with their income find a cheap eat at Burger King or McDonalds—-those who have a little more to spare are eating at places where they sell cage-free chicken and organic lettuce for a much higher price.
In our schools, new, obtrusive federal policies are banning candy as rewards to children and their lunch plate is being piled with apricots and carrots that end up in the waste basket because the elitists are trying to control the appetite of our youngsters. With that strategy, the obesity epidemic will be solved because the kids will just decide not to eat.
Common Core is also a policy that is negatively affecting the middle class. A major focus of the Common Core standards is preparing children for college and career readiness. But these standards are really separating students at an early age between those that will go to college and those that won’t. I fear that this can have an adverse impact on the number of career opportunities that some kids will have access to.
“Obamacare” is another failed policy growing the divide between Americans. This policy forces those who can’t afford or perhaps don’t need insurance to purchase a product that they may never collect on instead of investing their money to bring them to the next income level. For other families, part-time hours have been cut in order to avoid having the employer provide insurance. But many of those who are supporting these failed policies are fortunate to already have employer-provided health insurance and the increased costs of coverage is seen to them as a minimal cost.
The failed policies of the federal government are creating a wider income divide. Policies like Common Core will ensure that the pattern becomes generational. As federal policies continue to separate society you will see a growth of patterns where some people eat 15 or 25-cent chicken nuggets, while others are eating $10 and $12 meals. I intend to continue working to void these failed policies for Ohioans.
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The writer represents the 84th District in the Ohio House of Representatives.