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New Mexico Bill Would Force High School Students to Apply to College

Lots of people graduate from high school not knowing what they want to do next. Some of those folks end up in college anyway. Others join the military. Others work until they decide what they want to do.

It's one of the first great decisions young Americans get to make.

But the nanny staters in New Mexico are considering a bill requiring high school students to apply for college, or to present an alternative plan for the future -- which would then need to be approved by the government -- before being allowed to graduate.

House Bill 23 is the brainchild of Republican state Representative Nate Gentry and Democratic state Senator Daniel Ivey-Soto. It requires students to apply to college or to present an alternative plan; acceptable alternatives include military service, an internship, or an apprenticeship.

The clear problem with this idiocy is the Constitution.

The lesser problems are in how misguided these intentions are. College is a terrible idea for many people -- and probably for most people, considering how costs have ballooned while the value of a diploma has decreased. But some people just aren't ready for college, or for choosing a path through technical schools. And they're not good candidates for the military, either.

They need time to figure things out. And they have the right to do whatever they want without government oversight once they are of legal age.

But this bill seeks to make that impossible. It would requires students, many of whom are legal adults by the time they would graduate, to jump through hoops whether or not they have completed the academic coursework.

For what? What's the big endgame?