$20 For Flipping Burgers? Yes, They Deserve It

Gretchen Lee Bourquin
The Partnered Pen
Published in
4 min readMay 12, 2024


Photo by Fernando Andrade on Unsplash

Recently, it was announced that workers at California McDonald’s workers would be getting $20 per hour, and the debate was revitalized.

Prices are going to go up. They will just end up firing people.

No one is going to be able to afford to go there anymore.

It will ruin people’s incentive to get something better.

Those jobs are meant for teens, not adults, and they don’t need that much.

While all of these things may be true sometimes, it doesn’t really matter. People do still stop at McDonald’s when they want a quick meal and don’t want to think too hard about it. Many of them aren’t very nice. McDonald’s employees are not always treated very well by customers, or their bosses, or society.

Yes, it is a common first job for teens, but it doesn’t make it less of a job. It is also a job for post retirement. It’s a job for the mom who wants to pick up a few hours while the kids are at school. It’s a job for whomever and for whatever reason that person accepted the job. No one has the right to judge whether or not a person’s choice of job is a worthy career for them, or a stepping stone toward bigger and better things. The bottom line is if there is demand for a certain job, the person doing that job deserves decent treatment and decent pay.