Should We Cancel Student Loan Debt?
A Miniature Essay
I thought long and hard about what to call this particular miniature essay. Various petty names cycled through my mind, and I had to remind myself that I am *saved*. (My top vote was “Why I Am Not Going To Keep Explaining Myself About Student Loan Debt”) At any rate, let me start out by stating a few things. First, I usually share some of these type of thoughts on the paid/premium side of the site. Second, I am a theologian of course, but that doesn’t mean this topic is out of bounds. I am a theologian AND I think seriously about how my view of God impacts this issue. Third, this issue is an issue that is plaguing this nation so let us talk about it.
For years there has appeared to be a visceral reaction inside some when the notion of forgiving people’s student loan debt. The very thought of just letting people off without paying has been the topic of articles, news reports, social media.
“I paid off all my student loans…why can’t they?”
“If we forgive everyone’s student loans…what will that mean to the thousands of people who have already paid off their student loans?”
While I could comment on this topic from a variety of angles I want to keep focused on the people that I find to be the most perplexing; Christians. It is curious to me that Christians of all people seem to be the most vocal over this concept of forgiveness. Liberation for some seems to bring about mockery. Hmmph. “If we forgive them then what about…” Playa let me tell you about a God who gave up everything. Let me tell you about a God who handcrafted the world in love and in the fullness of times was sown in weakness and raised incorruptible. Very inconvenient stuff. The cancellation of debt should be the easiest for Christian people to understand, let alone humans. Even selfishly speaking, student loan forgiveness helps us all out. When the masses who are crippled by student loan debt are freed from their overwhelming bondage, they will be able to participate fully in our capitalistic society. It just makes sense.
If we could be honest, the many who don’t get wanting to forgive student loan debt at this point, at least a good portion of them, feel that someone should have to *pay* the consequences. Someone should have to atone. (Sound familiar?) We can’t have people just gleefully forgiven. Liberation costs something. Others have had to toil and they want others to experience this. Personally, as someone who has paid off student loans in the past, I want freedom for the next generation. I look for a liberation that is total. I want a society that is better than what I have experienced. Selah.
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