Your Useless Major is Why My Useful One Matters
Image via Flickr user Mr_CRO
This guy, man. I really want to love this guy, but he just keeps saying stuff that drives me up a wall. Recently, he said:
Folks can make a lot more potentially with skilled manufacturing or the trades than they might with an art history degree.
Come on, Mr. Obama, I thought you were better than that. I thought you believed in creativity and innovation. I thought you believed in higher education. Remember when
Rick Santorum Sick Rantorum called you a “snob” for wanting to send more kids to college?
Well I guess your snobby days are over, huh?
Now, to his credit, Mr. Obama apologized for his spur of the moment comment, and he explained that he just picked art history off the top of his head and wasn’t thinking about it. In a world where politicians are on a 24-hour news cycle, we should cut the dude some slack for saying something a little off.
But there’s more to it than that. Why did Obama jump to art history? Why did he feel the need to defend skilled manufacturing labor in light of the availability of art history majors? And, also importantly, why did he imply that the amount of money a person can make is the main reason to do a certain job?
I think the answer to these questions comes down to what makes a certain job more important than another job. Well, let’s go through it, then.