there is a vintage mailbox in our bathroom. it’s over on the wall under the window and current magazines and catalogs live there. it was the first mailbox we had after this old house was sided and the mailslot was covered over. there is still a little door inside the foyer where the mail used to wait after delivery, but it hasn’t been used in recent years. for a while i would keep treats in there for piano students as they left. one student, in particular, loved this tiny door and would check it every time after his lesson. if i had grandchildren i would most definitely keep surprises for them in there. a girl can dream…
when i walked into the bathroom the other day it just so happened that the way the magazines were stuffed into the mailbox revealed one word – sense. sometimes the universe has a sense of humor. no pun intended. for “sense” was what i was seeking at that moment. a layer cake of sense.
predatory lending in the student loan arena began around 2000. the arrow of the poison bow hit david in graduate school. it has not let go since. navient – one of the big student loan lenders – took part in subprime loans, private loans, misrepresented loans, aggressive forebearance-steering, sloppy accounting, the list goes on. and people’s lives – real people in the real world trying to make a real living and pay off real debt – have been skewered forever. crushing debt…in story after story in which interest is principalized, in which families aren’t given income-driven options, in which the debt rises instead of falls even as diligent efforts are made to pay down this farce of lending.
i walked into the bathroom – inbetween phone calls with navient during which they were unable to even supply the simplest of information – how doesn’t this feel like withholding while deadlines loom near? i’m gobsmacked by the murkiness of it all. dysfunction rears its ugly head.
“student loans were never meant to be a life sentence,” (united states secretary of education miguel cardona)
2001-2022. that’s a pretty long sentence. predatory indeed.
and now, as we – in our sixties – join in hopeful song with millions of others – of various ages – who have been – thisisnotanexaggeration – victimized by student loan lending malpractice, more than a few things happen. there is a mysteriously quiet change made for privately-held FFEL loanholders, a screeching halt. and then, there is an uprising putting the whole kitnkaboodle on hold.
to which naacp president derrick johnson said, “the very people blaming this administration for inflation are coming after the policies that will ease the pain of inflation on those most impacted.” he adds, “this is hypocritical. when we bail out billion-dollar corporations, it’s never an issue. but when it comes to lifting people who need the help most, including pell grant recipients—51% of which go to students whose families earn less than $20,000 a year—somehow it becomes an issue.”
so many stories. so many we-the-people. so many families. and their general welfare.
but that’s what predatory is.
i rolled my eyes as i walked into the bathroom. “sense”
so much of it all doesn’t make sense.
thinking that it actually might, makes me sad.
i’m going to check the little mailslot in the foyer for a treat. a girl can dream…