Penny Lame

Penny Lame

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Abortions, gun control and politics are extremely controversial topics that seem to infest our media tirelessly day in and day out. Media outlets primarily focus on these topics and tend to overlook other more important issues in the process. Constantly, they debate and argue but they are always forgetting the most controversial topic of them all… the penny. Only standing at a mere three fourths of an inch and weighing in at two and a half grams, the American Penny is a waste and an inconvenience to the American people. It has become outdated in our modern society and is irrelevant. It frustrates consumers because there is almost nothing that a consumer can buy with a single penny. In fact pennies are so worthless that they are more likely to end up in the trash then to be put to any significant use. We as a nation should retire the penny and get rid of it in its entirety. Or in simpler words… the penny must die.

If the average person is strolling down the sidewalk on a Sunday afternoon and spots a penny on the ground, they most likely won’t even bother to waste time trying to retrieve it. However, if the coin was a quarter or even a dollar bill, they would probably snatch it up in a heartbeat. Now why is that? The penny is a form of currency after all. Shouldn’t people be taking the advantage of free money they found on the ground? People don’t pick up pennies because they are worthless and most people know that. Back when the penny was relevant, a consumer could actually buy something with a penny like candy or food. Now there is almost nothing a single penny can buy. Pennies, nowadays, are just a hassle to people and have more cons than pros. It is incredibly annoying and frustrating to carry around a boatload of heavy pennies in your pocket and only being able to buy small things with a lot of pennies.

It is also common sense from an economical stance to get rid of the penny. The penny in plain text is waste to the taxpayers. The penny by far is the most produced form of United States currency and the most expensive to make. According to the U.S Mints 2014 Annual Report, it cost 1.7 cents to make a penny. Do the math and it turns out a penny can’t even buy a penny. On larger scale, in 2014 eight billion pennies were made for around 132 million dollars. Yet those pennies are only worth around 50 million dollars. One doesn’t have to be a rocket scientist to see how much money is wasted. The government needs to produce the pennies more than other form of currency because the penny doesn’t circulate in the market that well. Fun fact, nearly 21 percent of all pennies go missing or are thrown away. That is more than all the other forms of currency combined. It’s frustrating to the taxpayers because according to the New York Times the production of pennies cost the taxpayers about 39 million dollars a year. It just goes to show what our government is wasting money on. Instead of building roads, supporting our military or going to funding education, the government decides to spend the money on a worthless coin that no one uses.

The penny is still around for one faulty argument that makes absolutely no sense. As almost everyone knows, the penny is most famous for the 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln, being plastered on the coin looking right instead of left like the other presidents on coins. Abraham Lincoln is widely considered one of the best presidents of all time for his work of preserving the union and help ending slavery. Even I can’t argue that Abraham Lincoln wasn’t amazing. People in favor of the penny say that the penny is patriotic and shows Lincoln so we should keep it. The only reason penny is still around is because Lincoln is on it. It’s not like Lincoln is on any other form of currency. Oh wait, he is. For chrissakes, Abraham Lincoln is on the five dollar bill as well. The five dollar bill is worth 500 times more than the penny. So why don’t we keep Lincoln on the five dollar bill and chuck the penny? It wouldn’t be the first time the United States got rid of a coin. In 1857, the United States got rid of the half cent coin. They realized that the coin had become worthless and there was no reason to keep it around. People predicted that the economy would crash when they got rid of the half, but it didn’t really affect the economy that much. Even Canada in 2012 discontinued the penny.

I’m proposing that we get rid of the penny. When I say get rid of the penny I don’t mean collect all the coins in the United States and burn them for scraps. I’m saying the United States should simply stop producing them and let them just die out on their own. They would slowly and surely disappear. We would start rounding our purchase to the nickel. It’s just so worthless and cost a lot of money to make a penny. It’s a flat out waste. Even Presidents on many occasions have come out to speak on how worthless the penny is. Society has changed since the penny’s birth. In modern times, people resort to debit cards and online banking more than paying in cash and coins. The penny once had value but now it is next to worthless and should be once and for all retired.