Matt Walsh: College or Misery

Reading Matt Walsh almost makes me feel like not writing anymore, simply because he has said it all and he has said it so brilliantly.

I had to share one of my most recent favorites because I know you’ll love it. You will. Trust me.

Kids, Go to College or You’ll Die Alone in Misery

“I’ve written this Message About Education. Call your kids into the room, this is addressed to them:

Hi kids! Hey, let’s discuss college! Actually, this is not a discussion. You WILL go. You MUST go. Only lazy, dirty losers don’t go to college. You aren’t a lazy, dirty loser, are you? ARE YOU?….” Read the rest

Follow up with his answer to a letter he received:

“My child is gifted. He’s also 29, unemployed, and living in my basement”

Don’t forget to come back and tell me what you think…



23 Responses to “Matt Walsh: College or Misery”

  1. Laura says:

    Loved it! I can’t wait to share this with my family. You see our children are the people on the path to being losers, while their cousins are all being educated to their higher calling…career students who never grow up!

    Thanks for posting this!

  2. Smitti says:

    Thank you so much for sharing! I loved it! As an aside, explaining to my mother-in-law that we aren’t sending our kids to college (unless they know specifically what they want to study) was a good way to start an argument, until we pointed out that SHE doesn’t have a college degree (and has Hugely successful in management among other things), nor does my sister-in-law (who has been involved in several home businesses), and that my own mother was more than successful in college (when she went back at age 38) b/c she had always known she wanted to be a nurse. We have 3 ‘losers’ right in our own family! : )

  3. Lara says:

    This is an awesome article! He covers every angle of the subject. VERY good and very good to share. We need our society to start realizing what is stated in this article is true! 🙂 I’m married to a non-college but HIGHLY educated and smart man. (Field of science and technology.) There are other ways to get a higher education than an institution. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  4. Keri says:

    Personally, I think he was a little to sarcastic. I do get the point that he was trying to say here. I think the world in which we live in, puts way to much emphasis on college education. Even in our Christian circles. I am not completely opposed to it, having a daughter who has been to Christian College for two years. She is actually finishing a degree online.

    To many kids and families get way in over their heads in debt. We have observed that some families send there kid away simply because they don’t know what to do with them.

    Our church is kind of a “Send them off as soon as they graduate to a Christian College” but I really believe our Pastor has realized in the last couple of years that not every one is doing that right now.

    He did the Coolest thing last night!! He had all the young people in our church who have finished high school-college or no college- go up to the front of the church and He and several others prayed for them. Since I have four adult kids in that category, I was so touched and of course cried! I so appreciate his heart for young people!!

    I don’t really think this guy really needed to be “In Your Face Sarcastic” about it. I have adult kids who have great jobs and careers right now without going to college and are independent with their finances. We help with nothing. The Best Thing about it is that if they want to go to college now, they will have no debt.

    • Word Warrior says:


      My thoughts on sarcasm as it relates to this post (I’ve thought about it since reading his site as his primary method of persuasion involves a great deal of sarcasm).

      Absurdity requires sarcasm, in my opinion. I think he has a gift of using it without being hateful (most of the time) and it becomes an effective tool for making important points.

      Consider that *satire* has been used and widely applauded for its effectiveness to “expose and criticize people’s stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.” Sarcasm is essentially an element of satire and needed sometimes to break through the clouded misconceptions we hold so tightly.

      That doesn’t mean it’s always appropriate, but I actually think Walsh has mastered its use.

      • Keri says:

        No offence Kelly. I really mean that but I have to say that I don’t EVER think that sarcasm needs to be used as a means of persuasion. Let me explain.

        Jesus NEVER used sarcasm to get his point across. He was very meek and humble and used truth and parables. I think when we use sarcasm like this that we just send those who are so hungry for the truth, running from sites like this. I don’t know if this man is a Christian and I know he’s talking about college and not Christ here but I personally don’t find his method proper. I understand some of his points. Sometimes it just needs to be good old honest examples of those who are taking care of their families without the college degree. (My husband is one also with no degree) and he is one of the most hard working, wise men I know.Just my thoughts..Have a Blessed day!!

        • Word Warrior says:

          You’re probably right. Although there are some instances of satire in the Bible–Paul, particularly.

          And Jesus’s method of calling out hypocrisy is not considered a very popular/loving approach. If Matt had just started name-calling, wouldn’t that have been not-so-gentle either?

          I certainly do agree we too often enjoy being sarcastic over being meek, angry over being forgiving. But there is a time and place, demonstrated by the most Humble of all, to call out what is wrong and absurd, even using language that is biting and strong.

          When satire/sarcasm is used to instruct, correct and improve rather than when it’s intended simply to wound, I think there is a difference and it may be acceptable for the Christian. But likely not often.

      • Keri says:

        I suppose you could say that he has mastered the use of sarcasm!

        • Kristin says:

          I’m going to have to agree with Keri on all accounts. I, too, agree that there is too much of an emphasis on kids going to college (and this is coming from someone who is considered by some to be overly educated). However, I am completely turned off by the use of sarcasm. Sarcasm is defined as such:
          1. A cutting, often ironic remark intended to wound.
          2. A form of wit that is marked by the use of sarcastic language and is intended to make its victim the butt of contempt or ridicule.

          I want to be talked to like an adult. I want to be reasoned with. Go ahead and provide solid counter-points and interrogate my opinion/point of view. This type of discourse has altered my opinion on topics in the past. But as soon as I feel as if I am being wounded and cut, as soon as I feel as if I am being made fun of or ridiculed for having the opinion I have, the conversation is over. If you want to convince someone that you are right, if you want to change the popular opinion of today’s culture, sarcasm is not the way to go. It may make you feel better about yourself and your opinions, it may exemplify how witty you are, and it may give you praise of those that already agree with you, but it won’t help you to convince anyone else (atleast not me). And in the end, you lose.

          Although, in this case I do agree with the article— but the sarcasm still turns me off.

  5. 6 arrows says:

    I’m reminded of my brother’s experience with high school guidance counselors who were disappointed in his decision to forego college to continue farming with my dad. My brother was in the top ten students in his graduating class of about 600. He was advised that, with the grades he’d earned in high school, he should go on to get a university degree. It didn’t matter to them that he only wanted to continue a successful farm operation my dad and grandpa had been running for many years.

    My brother resisted their advice (he did go to the local vocational school for their farm management program, which I think was one year in length, but he didn’t go waste his time and money pursuing something in which he had no interest), and today is very successful in his “field”. 🙂

    Good articles!

  6. Deborah says:

    I spoke to a college professor in church yesterday who asked about where my teenage son was. I admitted that he was working even though when he was hired at a local restaurant a few months back, Sundays were not part of the deal.

    He told me how glad he was that my teenager was working. He finds that no matter what they study, kids who have worked are much more serious students then those with spending money to burn that they have not earned.

  7. shannon says:

    couldn’t agree more. Sure wish I would have heard of this $40,000 ago (no, I’m not kidding) and 10 years ago. I am actually to the point of being quite embarrassed of my degree and only bring it up when discussing with others what NOT to do. Sigh…Maybe someday I’ll quit learning the hard way!

    • Word Warrior says:

      We fought student debt for years. Not only that, but both my husband and me had credit card debt from our college days. It shouldn’t even be allowed…credit card companies set up all over campus to get us signed up. I literally signed up one day because I didn’t have enough money for lunch and they were giving out FREE, giant-sized Resee cups for just filling out the form.

      Really, who can pass that up? Especially a broke, hungry college student. And that was the beginning of a long, hard road that plagued us for years. We had to learn the hard way too.

      Oh and that degree? I so could have learned all that (and saved a ton of money AND time learning things I didn’t need) for free.

      Yes, this notion (thank you, Matt,) of “no degree means no education” must die.

      Thankfully, I’m hearing that more and more employers aren’t looking for that piece of paper nearly as much as they are looking for a willingness and eagerness to learn, and common sense and the ability to communicate.

  8. Charity says:

    Wow! Thanks so much for these links! I can’t wait to share these articles with my husband. He’s gonna hoot and holler! 😛

    I’d love to have a moment to comment more often but these days are full of caring for five little ones…one being a chunky 4month old that needs nursing often. 😉 I’m still a faithful reader though.

    • Word Warrior says:

      Charity–it’s so good to see your comment. And boy do I understand your limited time! And boy do I understand a chunky monkey that needs nursed often! I should post a picture and we could compare chunkiness 😉 Thank you for dropping in.

      • Charity says:

        You know we’d all love to see an update picture of Kade! If your “little” guy is anything like our Mr. Chubbers then he probably has never felt like a newborn at all. I feel like I’ve missed out on the newborn stage with our last two since they were such big boys from the get go (10lbs. 6oz then 10lbs. 14oz. and I know your last two were close behind). I told my husband that I’d love to have a little girl next, you know, 9 1/2lbs or so? 😉

  9. Carolina says:

    somebody gave me the link. it is very funny and very true. BTW, I would recommend most articles of his blog.
    BUT Kelly, I have a question here. since you defend apprenticeship, and I do not know much about them, what specific jobs could a young man pursue through them? I come from a different country and from an academic white collard background, and I do not know much about other options. How do you get into an apprenticeship in the USA? Working alongside somebody who is in the certain job you want?

  10. Lori Neiswander says:

    So true what Matt has to say….sarcasm and all. Just last week someone said to me: ” Lori, your 20 yr old son seems to be doing so well even though he isn’t going to college.” Hmmm, ya don’t think? Let’s see. Full-time job before he graduated high-school. Check. Two raises b/c of merit and work ethic. Check. Studying for private pilot’s license and paying for it himself. Check. Leads worship on a University campus, church, and Bible study group through-out the week. Coaches baseball. Sings with a men’s chorus. Pays his own phone, gas, clothing, lots of food, own vehicles, insurance. Check. Yes, he’s doing well without college….and still is learning on his own what interests him. 😀

    • Word Warrior says:

      Lori–that is awesome! He sounds a lot like my brother. Same scenario. Thrives in his business (has a pilot’s license too) because of impeccable work ethic, communication skills and the ability to learn whatever he needs to. He’s also an elder at 37. Lots of wisdom that guy.

  11. Natalie says:

    Thank you for bringing this blog to our attention. I agree wholeheartedly.
    My 17 year old recently decided to go to Bible College instead of getting a journalism degree from our local University. I am so happy because the whole time that he was planning to go to a secular school, I just knew it was not God’s will for him. People were telling him that it was the only way to make a living, support a family, etc.
    His heart has been for ministry, he loves studying and teaching theology. I just knew this particular child was not supposed to follow the “normal” course, but I did not want to say much to influence him.
    I prayed for God’s will, and much to my delight…he changed his course of action. It is almost too good to be true, but the Lord is faithful.
    What freedom there is in being directed by the Lord, instead of the world!

  12. Marie H says:

    I thought the letter from Nick had to be a joke….it’s one thing to be in denial while living it, but to actually put pen to paper (and then read what you wrote) and not realize that a 29 yr old “gifted” son living in his parent’s basement = loser… wow. That boy needs to be given a two month deadline to find a job and move out.


    though college should be a conversation (as someone pointed out) it shouldn’t be summarily dismissed as a waste…it was absolutely one of the best experiences of my life. I’m an academic at heart and loved all my learning.

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