Earlier today, the Biden administration announced an extension of the moratorium on student loan payments until May 1st after the Omicron variant continues to present a potential threat to the economy. This means that the pause that has been on paying federal student loans since May 2020 will continue, giving breathing room to graduates with student loans during a difficult time for the economy and job security. However, though this is good news and a step in the right direction, this action caused #CancelStudentDebt to trend on Twitter with over 18,000 thousand tweets and counting as many believe that student debt should be irradicated, not paused.
Extending the student loan payment pause is a major relief for millions of Americans during this pandemic.
I appreciate everyone who organized and pushed President Biden to take action, and I’m grateful he listened to our call.
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) December 22, 2021
Once this announcement was made, there were certainly mixed reactions surfacing. Some were happy to hear this, believing that it would at least be a start in the correct and anticipated direction. According to Biden in his official statement, he understands that “millions of student loan borrowers are still coping with the impacts of the pandemic and need some more time before resuming payments.” But, some people still insist that if payments can be paused, they should be eradicated completely.
Please, just cancel them. We’re an entire generation that got duped with the promise of high wages in exhchange for a degree. We’re living 2-3 adults in an apartment. We can’t afford to buy homes or have a family. This sucks. Please, cancel them outright.
— venus as a boy (@synth_fetish) December 22, 2021
Some, however, existed on the exact opposite side of the spectrum, believing that payments should not be paused or canceled. In Biden’s statement, he notes the facts regarding our current economic state: “with nearly 6 million jobs added this year, the fewest Americans filing for unemployment in more than 50 years, and overall unemployment at 4.2 percent.” With this being said, some believed the pause on student loans should be removed, making it that borrowers will resume paying their loans and interest will return to normal.
so economy and jobs are doing fantastic, but you won't make my son pay back his college bill and learn some responsibility? There are already protections in place for those that cannot find a job or lose a job. Get these kids paying back their debt!
— BobNoxious (@BobNoxious123) December 22, 2021
Some believe that if the economy is doing better, people should return their debt. One concerned parent believes that paying back debt will help them learn some responsibility, a common belief within those for repaying student debts. However, some still believe that with college tuition increase over the years and with the unexpected events of the pandemic, the debt should be removed. In fact, AOC and other senators or members of Congress, joined the conversation revolving around the pause of debts, urging Biden to cancel them entirely.
Good news from the Biden administration! I've been calling for a pause, and I'm glad to see the administration taking this step. Thank you, @POTUS.
— Senator Jeff Merkley (@SenJeffMerkley) December 22, 2021
We can change decisions and conditions. We just did with the idea of sending out millions of free at-home COVID tests – initially laughed at, yet now it’s happening.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) December 21, 2021
As expected, many involved still believed that student loans should not be forgiven, as this conversation is not brought up to other loans like when buying a house or a car. Some believe that it is your personal responsibility, and forgiving it could represent a terrible message.
"Canceling" student loan debt is like CHOOSING to buy a car and then expecting someone else to pay for it.
Going to college is a choice.
The debt you owe is no one's responsibility but your own.
— Madison Cawthorn (@CawthornforNC) December 19, 2021
How to solve student loan debt:
1. You take out a loan
2. YOU PAY IT BACK
— ACTforAmerica (@ACTforAmerica) December 19, 2021
This conversation, like many when it comes to topics that seem to divide conservatives and liberals, can be difficult to understand pros or cons and what it would mean to forgive all student loans. However, the conversation is important to several people, which is obvious to see after it trends on both sides of the political spectrum.