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Editorial: Occupy Missouri Western

Your job is to be a student.

College students, including some Western students, are participating in the Occupy Wall Street movement. With as much as is going on in their lives, how can these students juggle it all?

We are not unemployed. Any traditional college student has a job: getting an education. They are not part of the 99 percent.

The traditional college student has their way paved: parents pay for health insurance, car insurance, gas and sometimes even food. If you want to discuss financial inequality, maybe you should pay for some things, too.

Now, this isn’t the boat that every traditional college student is in or every person in generation Y. There are people in the 18-25 year-old-bracket that do pay their own way, but not all do.

Fortunate students should not waste their time occupying Wall Street, Pittsburgh, Kansas City, Mo., or St. Joseph. Your job is to learn and find your place in society.
As Thomas Friedman said at September’s Convocation, Americans must have the work ethic of an immigrant. While protesting or demonstrating has always been branded as an automatic honorable act, in some cases it should be perceived as nothing but laziness.

You want a job when you graduate? Work three internships. You want to enjoy your work? Do something you love. You want to have family security? Start saving for your retirement and children’s college educations now.

College students aren’t lazy, they are just confused. Real laziness gets you kicked out of school. Traditional students just lack an understanding of how the real world operates. Regardless of an education or a diploma, the ideal job may not be waiting for you six months or two years after you graduate.

Have you ever played the board game Life? Did you ever rip up the board when you got a bad roll? Did you steal the other player’s money when they got ahead? No, that’s against the rules. Life is a game about you, not the other players. You can’t change the decisions other people will make, only your own. Why would you want to change their decisions? You’re not learning anything from it and neither are they.

If you want to make change, start with you. Standing outside city halls and financial centers, waving signs about things you don’t fully comprehend doesn’t get you anywhere. What are you achieving from it? There might be some satisfaction that you belong to a group philosophy, but the point of humanity is supposed to be about the individual’s thought. Expand your self, not the herd.

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