The world is on fire, and I still have student loans

And unfortunately, that “on fire” part is literal. The west coast of America is burning up due to climate change that people in charge are still saying is a hoax.

More and more these days, it’s easy to see the blatant corruption in America. And while some people are protesting, the government is using/planning to use weapons of war against these peaceful protesters.

And on top of all that, Trump has the gall to say that America is doing well against covid. We’re (Americans) currently banned from entering almost every other country in the world because of how poorly this has been handled! America has about 4% of the world’s population, yet 25% of the covid cases. That’s not a good number.
It drives me nuts that people still support him. There is absolutely nothing good that he’s done since he’s been in office. Nothing that helps America, only things that hurt it.

All you have to do, for covid, is look at other countries. Most other countries are more back to a semblance of our previous normal than we are. I wanted to go back to Japan before my driver’s license there expired, but I really don’t think it will happen now because of the pandemic.

And despite the raging pandemic, I still have student loans. Since I quit my cashiering job because the stress was making me sick, I’m down to one part time job, which very quickly won’t be enough to pay the loans every month. I know, I know…they’re currently on forbearance till 2021. But you know what? This is the first time in the 8 years I’ve been paying them that I’ve managed to make a significant dent, because they’re in forebearance with no interest.

First let me bring you up to date on my totals, as I haven’t done in quite a while. I’m still trying the debt snowball method, and it seems to be working, albeit slowly. Too slowly. I’ve been on the debt snowball for a little over three years and a half years now, and I can see that it’s making a difference. But not enough of a difference, not really. I’ll do a four year check in in a few months and you’ll see then.

My substafford loan………….$458.61
My advantage loan……………$4328.17
My consolidation loan………$40,572.29
Dad`s consolidation loan…$38,400.95
My discover card…$1443.75

Total Debt: $85,426.04

This month the amount on my discovercard was high because I paid car insurance for the year. Did you know that when you get your own car insurance, they bump you back to beginner rates, no matter how long you’ve been driving safely? It’s pretty annoying.

Anyway, on total debt. Yes, the number looks smaller than the one I started out with. But it also shows how toxic interest rate is for American student loans. I’ll use August as an example rather than the current month because my car insurance there messes up the numbers a little.
So, for example, from March to August 2019, my total debt went from $94,515.66 to $94,253.32. That’s only a $260 difference in five months.
This year, March to August 2020, keeping in mind that from March to present gov’t loans had no interest due to covid, my total debt went from $89,510.15 to $84,878.22. That’s a $4631 difference. And the payments I made were the same amounts, the timing I made the payments was about the same…the sole difference was the interest. And that is rather depressing, that student loans are set up in such a way that people cannot pay them back if they can’t pay more than the minimum amount due.

And so, with so much going on in the world, including:
worrying about the upcoming rigged election,
worrying about America literally burning,
worrying about Black Lives Matter (and make no mistake, they do)
worrying about covid, both catching it and the deaths that have already occured…
it seems rather selfish to be worried about not having enough money to monthly pay the loans I’ll be paying off for a minimum of another twenty or thirty years. But despite the major job losses in the country because of covid, the government hasn’t helped at all. In which case, it remains something that I have to worry about.

I know I’m lucky in that I don’t have to worry about a roof over my head or food so long as I live at my parent’s house. But that doesn’t mean I don’t have plenty of other worries. And I keep wondering what will happen when this election happens in November, if there even is a way to bounce back from what’s already happened the last four years.

As for Black Lives Matter…this is something that still doesn’t get enough attention. How in the world can America consider itself a free country when some lives are freer than others? A free country is supposed to be about equity and equal opportunity. That doesn’t exist in America, and hasn’t yet, despite what they want you to think. I know that much.

I read in a book once, that “if a place refuses to function as a launchpad for a few, it can’t function as a launchpad for anyone”. The book was referring to a single predominantly white, small town in the south that was not nice to the few black people who moved there.
But I thought about it, and in some ways, that quote sadly encompasses more than just the single fictional town. The book took place in the seventies or so, but still seems very relevant today, and it shouldn’t be. It’s something I think about sometimes.

1 thought on “The world is on fire, and I still have student loans”

  1. You forgot about kids in cages, and you were a few days early for the Supreme Court and let’s not forget “suckers” and “losers” and bounties on them…and that’s just for starters. But don’t worry if you can’t swim, as Butch Cassidy said…”the fall will kill you”

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