Letters to the Editor: A $15 minimum wage might work for California, but not Alabama

Biden sits in the Oval Office.
President Biden campaigned on raising the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour and added a provision to do just that to his $1.9-trillion COVID relief package.
(Associated Press)

To the editor: Your editorial in favor of a $15-federal minimum wage, more than double the current $7.25, argues that past increases have not caused significant job losses. This might well be true in some cases, especially where the new minimum was not much higher than the prevailing entry-level wages.

However, to argue that a doubling of wages in a low-wage state will not have significant impact on employment is simply to deny the most basic laws of economics.

Most people start with a low wage and earn more over time. When someone can’t get that first job, the negative effects might be lifelong.


Many people earn the minimum wage but live quite well, such as teenagers living with their parents. For those adults who can’t progress up the wage scale, it would be less damaging and cause less distortion for the government or charities to help them directly (which it already does in most cases).

More fundamentally, and unaddressed in your editorial, is whether the federal government should be forcibly interfering in private contracts between consenting adults. Whatever happened to being pro-choice?

Jaco van der Colff, Woodland Hills