By Mike Cunningham, Sarah T. Hermann Intern Scholar
In case you forgot, the federal government has absolutely no problem spending our hard-earned money, especially when our nation can’t afford it.
Today, unemployment remains at 9.2 percent with youth unemployment nearly twice that at 17.3 percent. What’s more depressing is that 75 percent of my generation will delay major life decisions, because we don’t feel comfortable in the current economic climate.
And yet, the federal government still finds it necessary to spend your money studying the penis sizes of gay men.
That’s right folks, in a time when we should be concerned about creating jobs and paying off our debt, Uncle Sam wants to understand the pressing issue surrounding the, “real individual-level consequences of living in a penis-centered society.”
This study should bring a whole new meaning to, “pork spending.”
Sure this type of pubic—I mean public— funding is ridiculous, but it is certainly not the first time the government has wasted your money when you could have used it more wisely.
With the use of your hard-earned tax dollars, The National Institutes of Health gave grants to fund absurd studies to investigate coked out mother rats and mailed-in toenail clippings.
In 2009, Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma outlined, in a 45-page document, how exactly the government is wasting your tax dollars. Forget lower taxes, more jobs, and more money in your pockets; we would be much better off stimulating the economy by saving fish sperm, helping turtles cross the street, or even funding one of America’s most elite schools to, “study how paying attention improves performance of difficult tasks.”
As if Yalies (Yale Students) studying what common sense already tells us isn’t ridiculous enough, our government has also vowed to spend your money on the greatest epidemic plaguing playpens everywhere: Preschool Obesity. There’s nothing like the joy of spending your money combating husky toddlers.
And of course, we would be remiss not to mention the beloved federally-funded Cowboy Poets.
That’s not to say that these studies or programs are not important. In fact many of these federally funded oddities are probably important to someone somewhere.
But, is it just me, or do these seem like, “some things that would be nice to have but we can afford to do without?”
Mike Cunningham is an Sarah T. Hermann Intern Scholar at Young America's Foundation.