On Monday, Senator Richard Ojeda and five other legislators spoke to an auditorium that enclosed about 200 people in Spring Valley High School. The hot topics of health insurance and pay raises for public employees were being addressed.
Representatives from organizations such as the West Virginia School Service Personnel Association and the West Virginia Education Association spoke at the assembly.
In some parts of the United States, educators make a pretty decent salary. In some parts of New York, for example, it is not uncommon for educators to make a livable salary of around $100,000 or more. However, in 2016, West Virginia ranked 48 on a list of average teacher salaries for each state in America.
When talking about the salaries of public workers, I think that we should be a little skeptical. After all, many times public workers say that they are making too little even if they really can afford to live on their salaries. There are places in the United States where public workers make questionably copious amounts of money. How much sympathy should we have for a teacher making $45,000 a year in West Virginia if there are a lot of people who can’t make anywhere near that?
In some of the most expensive places in America, like New York and California, $45,000 is really not a great salary. However, if you cut a lot of corners and live very frugally, it is feasible to live on—though you may not necessarily have the quality of life that you want or live where you want to live. So, why should I feel sorry for people making $45,000 a year in a place like West Virginia where the costs of living are lower and poverty is rampant? How much do these public employees want to make? Infinity dollars?