How many times have you heard the phrase “Guns don’t kill people, PEOPLE kill people”?
I’ve heard it many times through the years and I have to tell you, whoever came up with that quote pretty much nailed it. The person who pulls the trigger is the person who is responsbile for what happens after the fact, much like using a credit card.
Credit cards are NOT EVIL. Credit cards are little pieces of plastic that lay wherever you chose to store them. Credit cards do not jump out of your wallet and slide themselves through a card reader. Credit cards don’t make you have high interest rates, not paying off your balance every month does that!
Are credit cards always the BEST choice? Obviously not, but there are people out there who do pay them off in full every month. There are people who do use them effectively for the perks including cash back, travel miles, free hotel stays, roadside assistance, purchase disputes, and sometimes types of insurance that covers the items you purchase against breakage or theft! There are people who transfer higher interest rates on loans etc. to lower interest rate credit cards. Additionally, you are effecting your credit score with every purchase you make, sometimes in a good way, sometimes not so much.
I think it’s time as a society that we start actually explaining credit cards to younger generations with other terminology than EVIL. People who want to live their lives completely debt free, and people who truly do not believe in credit, should certainly pass that information along to their children, but I think it is also WISE to explain why, explain how cards work and explain why you think they shouldn’t be used.
I also think it’s equally acceptable to explain to a younger person why credit cards themselves are not evil, but how using them can effect your life in good and bad ways. You could start this lesson with your children at a young age, perhaps as young as 10 years old. Let them “borrow” against their allowance and show them how they don’t get it the next week because they have to pay back what they spent. Then explain to them that they have to pay you an extra $1.00 or $2.00 back for interest. A younger person with a limited amount of money will absolutely start to see how fast their money disappears if they don’t get to put it in their hands. You could even go so far as to give them “rewards” for paying them off early, like an extra dollar in their pocket etc.
I don’t know, maybe it’s just me, but I really feel like instead of using a blanket term like “evil”, we should perhaps say credit cards are unwise. If you can’t manage your money, if you consistently overspend, if you are in debt, then they are unwise, but like a gun, the credit card didn’t pull the trigger.by