It seems counterintuitive that many people talk about minimum wage and their pay. However, do they actually know what they are talking about. Minimum wage has been around for decades fluctuating at different prices over the years, but it has not changed its purpose. We’re going to be looking at the term minimum wage to see exactly what it entails. Clearly, if one were to separate the term to two words ‘minimum’ and ‘wage’ it can be easier to get a better understanding.
Let’s take the term minimum for example, this term meaning, one, “smallest or lowest” or even, “required.” Yes it is a simple term, but when you look into it a word that means small doesn’t seem that small anymore. This is only the literal meaning for the word, now we will go one step further into the real world. Some jobs have quotas to meet whether it is shipping or sales in a certain amount of time, there are things that need to be done. Again that would be considered the bare ‘minimum’ to be exact. Talking about it in business terms the word can have a different meaning. When putting money involved businesses main goal is to make the most profit they can. Which in theory is simple, however there are always small factors to take into account. Look around the world, the word ‘minimum’ is all over and used in so many ways clearly showing its importance. Also every place has a different understanding of what it actually means. However, most of the time it could have a bad connotation for example when talking about workloads, one would get judged for doing the bare ‘minimum’ at work. Not only this, but now take the term ‘wage’. Most thrive for this and usually this is what motivates people like you and I so to say. The correct definition for the term is, “a fixed regular payment, typically paid on a daily or weekly basis, made by an employer to an employee, especially to a manual or unskilled worker.” Another meaning could be wage is looked at as a salary for inexperienced workers. Pretty much money is the simplest term to get from a word like wage. Take the example of how the word ‘minimum’ has multiple meaning all over the world, it is the same for ‘wage’ as well. We see why the debate of these two words separated are an issue now the phrase ‘minimum wage’ is even worse.
For years the value of minimum wage has gone up and down like a rollercoaster. The economy cannot decide the exact price range of where it should stay. It seems counterintuitive that taking both definitions and putting them together that finding the “smallest” amount of “money required” to pay these people should not be such a hard task. Again such simple terms, but to make it even clearer, “Minimum wage is meant for small business.” Not only does the word small show up, but there is too much complication for something that is meant to be small. What this means is the term minimum wage has gone up and gone down throughout history, don’t you think it should be time to actually set up an actual ‘minimum wage’ where there is little to none increase. Or even set it to a price where one making minimum wage is required to get paid the right amount for the effort they put into the work. Having set wages for different degrees of work has been working for years with salaries, why not use that knowledge to go into minimum wage and work it from the ground up. Clearly, one can understand that having a phrase that means ‘small’ or ‘least’ is the complete opposite of what it means politically. In certain parts of the world there are laws where one can not be paid below a certain amount of money, which we see here in the U.S. However it seems odd since wouldn’t this technically be called ‘minimum wage’ since it is the lowest point where it would be illegal for workers to get paid that. Isn’t the whole meaning of minimum wage. Many questions could be asked from that however that is just a guideline mark and for most if not all times the wages that workers get paid are way above that price level. The laws state that the actual definition of minimum wage “ as the minimum amount of financial reward that a worker receives for working a specified period of time” meaning as one works a specific time you get paid per time you work. It is truly crazy that a phrase so small and simple could have such a big impact overtime in the world.
Sawchuk, J. (2015, Mar 31). Minimum wage increase creates unemployment.Alberni Valley Times
Adema, J., Giesing, Y., Schönauer, A., & Stitteneder, T. (2018). Minimum wages across countries. DICE Report, 16(4), 55-63.