Financial Crisis Woes
By Danielle Canada
On Friday, President George W. Bush signed a $700 billion financial bailout into law. The law which the president calls a “rescue plan” gives the National Treasury the right to spend up to $700 billion to buy mortgages and other assets from financial institutions such as banks and credit unions. The law also gives the Treasury the right to modify mortgages to help decrease home foreclosure. According to the Associated Press, many members of congress changed their vote from earlier in the week, and voted in favor of the bill citing their fear of a deeper recession as the reason for their vote in favor. Nationwide the “bailout bill” is getting mixed reviews. While some people are unimpressed, others are hopeful for change. “This bailout is just that, a bailout, not a solution,” says senior marketing major Alisha Glover of Delaware. “Banks cans still do the same thing they’ve been doing six months from now when I graduate college, so in six months I expect to be struggling just like everyone else is doing in the country!” Like Glover, Jennifer Canada, a graduate student at Virginia Commonwealth University agrees. “Even though I don’t have assets and I don’t have a 401 K, the financial crisis could affect me and my loans next year when I try to go to dental school,” says Canada. “If the banks aren’t lending out any money then I won’t be able to go to school. It’s as simple as that.” Canada is correct but if the bailout works as promised that shouldn’t be an issue. With the bailout, the government will be able to buy and take over “troubled assets” which Bush is hoping will retract from the repression-like state it is currently in now. Although President Bush promises the bill will bring about a positive change, questions about the bill still linger. Questions much like the ones asked by senior broadcast major, Randi McClain. “What happens if this doesn’t work? What if things get worse and wind up in a depression?” says McClain. “I’m not feeling the effects of this crisis yet but I will be in May when I graduate. I really hope things are better by then!” Many other students at Hampton University feel the same way as McClain. Senior Caresse Weatherford is most worried about her future in the business world after graduation. “Right now this crisis isn’t affecting me at all, I wake up every day and go to class like normal but I’m not sure what will happen in the future. Especially now that jobs are uncertain and there could even be a depression, I’m worried. How can I support myself on my own, with no job?” Students aren’t the only ones concerned; working adults have much to worry about as well. In one of the nation’s most famous and arguably greatest cities, New York, 46 year old Sharon Dawson hopes things improve for her family’s sake. “This crisis has made things so much harder for me,” says Dawson. “I need to refinance my house but I can’t because the banks aren’t willing to give me credit and my credit scores have been lowered. I hope the banks can eventually extend more credit so it will be easier to get a loan,” Dawson continues, “My daughter needs to college next year and without a loan that just won’t be possible,” With only three weeks left till the presidential election, this bill has undoubtedly put a strain on both parties’ campaigns. Senator John McCain suspended campaigning all together to pay more attention to the crisis and Senator Barack Obama is equally concerned. Until a solution to the crisis is met Americans will continue to be on edge. “I just want a change,” says Senior Brittany White, “Something’s got to give, because we can’t go on like this. I need to know that I’ll be able to get loans in the future for my house, my career, my life. I need to feel secure and feel comfortable and right now I’m not.”Americans are hopeful that the biggest bailout of the U.S. banking system will make things better, partly because they are optimistic but mostly because they can’t handle anything much worse.