After Biden Fails To Pay, Go Fund Me the Latest Saving Grace for Student Loans

Gary L Hider /
Gary L Hider /

When the 2020 Presidential election was held, one of the biggest platforms for Joe Biden to campaign on was the cost of a college education. With so many people buried under student loans for a worthless degree, they wanted the government to help them out. The promise of a good job and high-earning salaries convinced them that it was worth the money to get a degree.

In this credit-driven economy, government and private organizations were all too ready to hand these graduates tens of thousands of dollars and pay little to no attention to how it was spent. Given the artificially inflated costs in the school bookstores, college organizations operate them to justify giving someone thousands of dollars more than the costs of the classes. The overage is put into an account for the student, and now it’s theirs.

Blowing this money on new partying, clothing, vehicle repairs, spring break, or at the casino, they look at it as getting something now for a bit of suffering later.

Capitalizing on this misstep and the COVID situation that had put paying back student loans on suspension, he campaigned on it and got elected. He promised that student loan debt would be wiped out. He would find a way to write it all off for good. He hinted at free college going forward too. After getting elected, he kicked the can down the road as far as he could until he got told what he had proposed was not only not going to happen, but that it wouldn’t be legal either.

Suddenly faced with the premise of a bad debt heading their way, many have been scrambling to figure out what they could do. With so many taking extra or maxed-out loans during the hold on loan payments, they figured they should maximize their return before the rug got pulled on the program, and now they owe significantly more than the cost of that diploma. A diploma that doesn’t provide them much help in getting a better-paying job after all.

Backed into a corner, people are turning to GoFundMe (GFM) in droves. Designed as a place to raise money for charity, and help fund sudden and unexpected life-changing expenses. Or even aid a friend when their world is turned upside down, this service grew exponentially thanks to COVID. As people worried about possible evictions, GFM was their answer, and many who counted themselves fortunate and with extra income offered to chip in.

In 2022, when baby formula was shockingly hard to find and expensive due to factory issues and Bidenomics, people turned to social media for tips on where to get it, and GFM to cover the costs. Given how much formula a child can go through every week, it’s not surprising people needed this help.

Now the site is flooded with people sharing their message as to how their student loans are dragging them down. In October 2023 the student loan section of GFM jumped 40% from the year before. It coincides perfectly with the end of the COVID student loan payment pause. With interest starting on September 1st, and payments on October 1st, the over 44 million active student loan borrowers are looking for a way out from under the $1.7 trillion and growing they owe.

Currently, the average American carries $37,000 in student loans, and the interest racks up quickly given not only the interest rates of these loans but how they are broken up from multiple funding sources.

The answer of GFM isn’t perfect. Taking 2.9% per transaction, the company has processed over $25 billion in donations since it started in 2010. With medical bills piling up, many are turning to the site to facilitate their way out of debt faster than ever. Among them are also former professional athletes. Back in October, former Olympian Mary Lou Retton was forced to turn to GFM following an unexpected and lengthy hospital stay.

At this point, GFM is doing nothing more than kicking the can down the road and rewarding poor financial planning. Given the impact that repaying these loans could have on the American people, the government would be wise to simply convert these loans into non-interest collecting loans. Eliminate the predatory interest and go after the colleges for predatory practices, and maybe we can fix the problem.