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Formulate a Plan

Re: “I Make … $9 an Hour Plus Tips” (December 18 cover story).

It took me nine years from the time I started college in 1974 to get my bachelor’s degree in math, and a teaching certificate in 1983, and I worked minimum-wage paying jobs to do it. I worked downtown, uptown, took the bus everywhere (90 minutes from Clairemont to SDSU), and got very little sleep; but I did it. I didn’t major in anything silly that wouldn’t get me a job, and I didn’t make any babies.

What I’m talking about is that I had a plan. Although my plan started over 40 years ago, I still recommend that everybody formulate a plan, talk it over with others to be sure it’s sensible, and start working on accomplishing that plan. Every day that goes by, you’ll be one step closer to your goal. You can do it! I did.

Just be persistent and persevere, and always have faith in yourself.

  • Allen Stanko
  • Alpine

Not Society’s Fault

If I had any emotional response to the plaintive offerings of the individuals quoted in this article about the need for a much higher

minimum wage (“I Make 300 Cups of Coffee Every Day. I Get $9 an Hour Plus Tips,” December 18 cover story), it was one of incredulity at their lack of awareness about how their actions begat the consequences they now decry.

It is not society’s fault that you married an illegal alien, had four children, and now must work in a fast-food restaurant for low wages.

It is not society’s fault that you have been in the U.S. for 16 years and haven’t cared enough about your future to learn English and pursue your education.

It is not society’s fault that you dropped out of high school to have a child out of wedlock.

It is not society’s job, or a or business’s job, to bail you out for your avoidance of taking responsibility in advance, and not doing stupid things with lifelong consequences.

Yes, the socialists in San Diego government may decide to legislate a $15 minimum wage, and you probably will have a short-lived celebration as the business that was going to pay you this wage, inflated as to your ability to be worth it, will have gone belly-up.

  • Ralph Glorioso
  • Oceanside

Stay Hungry

I’m calling about your article, “300 Cups” (December 18 cover story). It actually struck a nerve with me.

I wrote this down because I wanted to choose my words wisely and to not offend some of these people. I don’t know their backstory, or how difficult their life has been.

I’m 26 years old. I’m undocumented and have been living here for 24 years. I’ve never had much, but I never complain. I work a full-time 40 and a part-time 30 to provide for my wife, who is a full-time student. All I ever want is to become a citizen. I pay taxes, just like everybody else. I’m constantly on Craigslist looking for labor gigs.

I feel people have to be on their hustle and be relentless, not taking no for an answer. Many of these people are just expecting life to be a cakewalk. I feel that’s why they’re in the position they’re in, possibly putting playtime before work. My only advice to them, as an illegal, is to stay hungry, and go out there and get it. Personally, I feel this is the greatest country on Earth, the land of opportunity. Nothing’s gonna get done just standing around complaining; you’ve got to go out there and get it.

  • Name Withheld
  • via voicemail

Typical of America

This is regarding the minimum wage article (“I Make 300 Cups of Coffee Every Day. I Get $9 an Hour Plus Tips”) in your December 18 edition. I was kind of sickened by the first story in the article.

Let’s see if I got this straight. A girl gets herself knocked up in high school by somebody here illegally, drops out of high school, then proceeds to have three more kids with the same guy by the age of 25. Now he can’t get a job, at least not a real one, because he’s not here legally. And she’s working 15 hours a week at a fast-food place, meanwhile getting government support that our taxes pay for. The best part is, when asked if she was looking for a better job, she replied, “Not right now, no.”

So, apparently, it’s ok to just keep living off the government and having children. Unfortunately, this is very typical of America today, and especially California. Things need to change. People need to get themselves a little better educated or at least develop a skill so they can at least support themselves.

  • Erik Brantly
  • via voicemail

This Is Crazy

This concerns Ask a Hipster in the December 18 issue. Are you people kidding, or what? That illustration — I’m trying to look at it with a magnifying glass and all I can make out are six different kinds of wrapping paper with different prices. I can just barely make out the price; it’s $20 or $30 or something. But the text ... it’s illegible. I can make out wrapping paper, but that’s about all.

What the heck are you people trying to do there? I thought the Union-Tribune was bad, with the funny papers that aren’t funny anymore. It’s so tiny that you can barely read it. The old-time funny papers were about two or three times what the U-T has them shrunken down to.

But this wrapping paper illustration, this is crazy!

  • Name Withheld
  • via voicemail
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