College tuition leads to unthinkable decisions, disheartening lifestyles

Elaine Sine, senior editor

After we leave high school, we’ll be the mature, untouchable college students getting an education. It doesn’t matter what price we have to pay for it, so long as it’s an education, even if it gives you crippling debt. And when we think of paying off those debts, the idea of doing sex work is taboo and not an option, especially for the well-off suburban kids like us who reside in the North Shore bubble.

However, according to Vice, five percent of college students in the UK have done some type of sex work (prostitution, cam shows, etc.). Although this doesn’t seem like a grand percentage, one in five students said that they thought of doing sex work to pay their tuition for college.

This isn’t just a British phenomenon, and it also occurs in the United States: Miriam Weeks, also known by her stage name Belle Knox, was a student at Duke University who began working in porn to pay for her tuition. Later on, due to Weeks’ income as a porn star, the university took away her financial aid, and she had to pay the full $62,000 tuition.

Let’s all take a moment to take this in: we have to consider doing work we’re not passionate about in order to pay for something that should inherently be a right in order to strive for the quality of life we should all deserve.

These facts about student sex work are disgusting not because of people who choose a career in sex work, but because they are forced to consider it since it’s money they could earn to pay for the glorified notion of a college education that is worth any price. In this progressive world where the U.S. government condoned spending 693 billion dollars on the military budget in 2010, according to Business Insider, we can’t even manage to offer all American children the choice to go to college with the inflated price for a degree.

If you’ve ever seen Good Will Hunting in which M.I.T janitor Will Hunting actually turns out to be a math genius, you’d know that everyone has the capabilities to become someone more than who they’re seen as from their socioeconomic position in life if they are given the chance.

Yes, Good Will Hunting is a fictional movie, so you’re probably going to think, “Well, that kind of intelligence isn’t something you encounter in real life,” right?

Well, what about in the documentary Spellbound, where Ashley White is a bright, entirely real girl with a photographic memory from Washington, D.C. who competed with other intelligent children in the 1999 Scripps National Spelling bee? Even with this beautiful talent of hers, White’s socioeconomic status and circumstance almost made her not go to college after getting pregnant at age 18.

A woman named Pam Jones found White after viewing the film and used her power as a nonprofit marketing consultant to help White go to Howard University, according to the Washington Post. No doubt is White smart, hard-working, persevering and a God-given gift on earth for her talents in which she “banged out 18 units a semester” to graduate, according to the Washington Post.

However, if she didn’t get the publicity from the movie in which she was featured, who would have cared about her?

It’s disappointing to see that governments around the world, especially the United States (where we declare the “liberty and justice for all”), can’t see that they’re wasting the potential of their children. Free college education would allow for everyone to show their potential, yet we continuously ruin it with this concern for money.

But please, continue extorting us, the sons and daughters of America, in order to gain that extra money you totally need. It’s not like we need it to survive in this world of moral stagnation, right?