The penny is a coin that is worth one cent. It was first designed by Ben Franklin in 1787, and the design obviously stuck. The coin was originally made of 100% copper but is now made with 95% zinc and 5% copper, the only copper part now being the outer shell. The reason for this change was because the value of the penny went down while the value of copper went up.
People decided that it was more worth it to just melt the copper and sell it than to just keep it. Even though pennies cannot even buy anything now, they used to be able to and were actually useful.
It is rather stupid to keep minting the penny because it costs more to make the penny than it is actually worth. It costs the Government about 1.8 cents to make a penny while a penny is worth only one cent. If something costs more to make than it is actually worth, then you might as well just discontinue it, but the mint still churns out 13 billion pennies a year.
Pennies are so useless that vending machines don’t accept them, nor do parking meters, nor does any store want to have to count the penny. Why would you carry around 100 pennies when you could just literally carry one $1 bill. Not only that, but say you want exact change, you’re just wasting your time getting the pennies out but also the time of the patrons behind you.
Pennies are a waste of our time because why would you want to buy $10 worth of groceries with 1,000 pennies. If one were to decide to buy things with a penny, then you would want exact change, but because there is a sales tax, and because it adds about two seconds to every cash transaction, it just isn’t worth it to use pennies and keep them in circulation. It is just illogical to carry them around and stores won’t waste their time on counting every single one of them. This is why most pennies just end up in jars being a dead weight on the economy.
Pennies used to be worth things, but not anymore. The United States continues to mint these coins even though they have basically no value whatsoever. It is hard to even find a place that would accept pennies. Stores won’t waste time to count them, it is a burden to carry in your pocket, and they cost more to make than it is actually worth. This is why the penny should be no more.
Jude Choi, Grade 10
John Marshall High School