What Does 'Minimum Wage' Mean to You?

Is a minimum wage salary for young adults grabbing a beer after work or for struggling families? Tell us.

The latest battle in the fight over a minimum wage salary isn't how much it should climb, but whether minimum wage workers need a raise at all.

In Virginia, Republican U.S. Senate candidate Ed Gillespie claimed to a group of supporters earlier this week that a lot of minimum wage earners are first-time workers just learning to get to work on time.

"It’s where you learn the social aspects of work," Gillespie said in a YouTube video released by Democratic opponents. "It’s where you play on the work softball team or go out for a beer after work. You know, we want to foster that and incentive work in this country."

Gillespie argues increasing the federal minimum wage from $7.25 an hour would reduce the number of these first-time jobs.

What does the minimum wage mean to you? Tell us in the comments section below.

Last month, it was the private sector making headlines in the minimum wage debate, as Ikea announced it will increase its minimum wage based on MIT's Living Wage Calculator.

That would put the furniture store's average minimum wage at $10.76 an hour, but the company notes the minimum wage will go over $13 an hour in some markets, including at the store in Woodbridge, Va.

Rob Olson, Ikea’s acting president for the United States and its chief financial officer, said the move is about improving the lives of employees.

“We are of course investing in our co-workers," Olson told The New York Times. "We believe they will invest in our customers, and they will invest in Ikea’s stores." 

What does the minimum wage mean to you? Tell us in the comments section below.
Jody July 20, 2014 at 08:41 PM
If states don't jump through the hoops, we don't get our tax money back, but the hoop jumping states do. Nothing fair about that. Yes, it's hard to resist the desire to get some of our tax money back from Washington. The Dept. of Education should be gathering statistics, reporting on the state of education here and abroad, proposing how to best align education with the needs of our country and available and future jobs etc. They shouldn't be dictating how states educate from on high. One size does not fit all. That's the problem with this central govt. control of everything notion that the libs love. The availability of cheap labor to pick produce has just delayed the move to local, smaller farming where the cost of labor will be somewhat offset with less shipping costs and less overhead. This would be a good thing. California is too dry for all the agribusiness it does. They'll run out of water someday. King Obama should do something about that ecological issue immediately.
TheSkalawag July 21, 2014 at 03:12 AM
" The availability of cheap labor to pick produce has just delayed the move to local, smaller farming where the cost of labor will be somewhat offset with less shipping costs and less overhead. " ----- I don't know where you got this from but the evidence isn't there to substantiate it. There are fewer and fewer small farms because family farmers are being demolished by giant global corporations. Here are two sites that back me up. ----- http://www.renaissancealliance.org/farmer.html and ----- http://bigstory.ap.org/article/number-us-farms-declines-farmers-getting-older ----- What do you have? ----- On the one hand you right-wingers complain that President Obama is doing too much. He's overstepping the Presidential boundaries. Then you turn around and make silly statements like "King Obama should do something about that ecological issue immediately." ----- What would you have him do? What is your solution? To me it sounds like what you right-wingers would call a State problem. They don't need the Feds meddling in. One size doesn't fit all. Or some other such nonsense.
Jody July 21, 2014 at 05:24 PM
I was obviously making a joke about King Obama stepping in on behalf of his tree-hugging voters-- I guess you don't have a sense of humor. There is a strong trend toward small, local farming because people want organicly grown produce and meat, not food doused with pesticides/fertilizers. Guess you missed that one too. The Dept. of Ed. can keep their Race to the Top and Common Core-- they are designed to force states to focus on bringing the bottom students up to an acceptable level for the sake of equality (typically all those non-native English speakers they pander to). All this does is produce mind-numbing, constant testing that bores the good students to tears and wastes their time. Wish we could take all that money being spent on educating Mexico's children and build more science/tech schools.
Jody July 21, 2014 at 05:26 PM
Do you care about our Constitution at all? Education is left to the states. The federal government constantly and continually oversteps its bounds.
Jody July 22, 2014 at 09:25 AM
I definitely believe in equality under the law. Illegal law-breaking aliens should not have equal rights under the law as US citizens. Illegal aliens have taken over most minimum wage jobs in the US because they lack English language fluency. An increase in the fed. min. wage would directly benefit illegal aliens and encourage more to come flooding over our porous borders. The cost of illegal aliens to local/state governments for their education/ support/subsidies, their cost to neighborhood cohesion, and their sheer numbers and high birth rates are costly to our country and we will be supplanted by them in perhaps as little as a hundred years. I don't want to learn or speak Spanish; Americans speak English. Hispanics don't want to be Americans or give up their culture or language-- they're just here for material gain.


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