well i like to refute two of your points, if you don't mind.
about surviving just on paychecks, that is not my fault that they have chosen a job that doesn't pay very well. i should not be expected to be their employer and pay them equal wages. i simply came to a restraunt to enjoy my meal. if you don't act nice toward me, why should i pay you extra money? i understand if you're busy, just tell me you're a bit full in the restraunt or the cook is screwing up, etc. i'll understand. but if you are downright rude to me, or ignore me because i'm younger, you do not deserve extra pay. if you can't survive on just that pay, either quit your job or get a better attitude. if you don't deal well with people, or in stressful situations, don't take a job that will require you to combat both of those things, most of the time simultaneously.
and about the attitude that servers get treated badly, that's how it is at any job. i understand that i have never waited tables and i cannot speak from experience, but i would never expect extra money if i did a crappy job. THAT attitude is what's screwed up, not the fact that servers get treated like shit. they took the job knowing perfectly well what they were being paid. if they don't like it, don't take the job. but don't be selfish and assume that you should get paid for doing a crappy service. i would be pissed if i did a great job waitressing and the other server did horrible and she still made a decent amount of extra money. that sets the attitude that even if you don't do a good job, people will pat you on the back and tell you that its okay. that's the kind of attitude that is hurting america. as many other people have replied, tipping isn't required or expected in their country. it's an extra bonus for doing a good job, as it should be. if you don't do a good job, then no bonus. end of story.