Age Restrictions on Work

Alexander S. Peak

14 August 2005

Stupid laws.  My grandmother probably would have hired me when I was a kid.  I was at her shop every day over the summers when I was younger.  Every day.  But I couldn’t work there because my all-knowing government wouldn’t let me.  (Well, that’s not true.  I did work, for free.  I made signs for the shop because I WANTED to volunteer, even if I didn’t get money from it.  Hell, I would have been bored if I hadn’t.)  Stupid government.

Around the age of ten, I found out the reason the government had its stupid law.  It wanted to “protect” me—or some stupid fucking bullshit like that.  I remember thinking to myself, “This is ‘protection’!?  I want to get a job, and my government won’t let me!  I want to start earning money, but my government won’t let me!  FUCK YOU, you fascist government!

I probably wouldn’t have used those words at the time, but that was my sentiments exactly.  I was ten years old, but I wanted to work.  I had to wait four years until I was fourteen until I could legally work.  That’s four years worth of money that could have gone to my college fund, if not for my stupid government.

Even if they’d paid me less than adults, it would at least have been SOMETHING!

Age ten is when I probably first started becoming a capitalist.  I wanted to make money, but my government wanted to “protect” me from making any profit.

I found a lot of four-leaf clovers at the age of ten.  So many that I decided to sell them for a quarter each during recess.  My teachers wouldn’t let me.  (If I knew then what I know now, I might have contacted the ACLU for help.)  Since teachers are State employees, I blame the government for their actions.  “Come on, it’s only twenty-five cents.  You can’t let me sell a rare commodity for even that low of a price?  I’m practically giving it away!  Why won’t you let me profit off of the fruits of my labour?”

I probably wouldn’t have used those words, but that was my sentiment exactly.

So, um, where was I?  I guess what I’m trying to say is that what government-schools taught me was that government hates the working man/woman.  Either that or it hates the youth.

Which reminds me, people under eighteen shouldn’t have to pay tax.  No taxation without representation.  And if I were in charge, I’d lower the working age from fourteen to ten.

When I turned fourteen, I got a job as a waiter at Oak Crest Village.  (Cha-ching, cha-ching!)  The job sucked ass, but I wouldn’t undo it for the world.  Let me tell you something about Oak Crest Village.  They give scholarships to everyone who works through their junior and senior year.  Four thousand dollars to everyone.  I hated the pay, but the scholarships were worth it, and the people, the friends, everyone I got to know.  It was Great!, despite it sucking so badly.

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