Understanding “The American Dream” | Do we truly have a fair shot?

I recently watched a documentary titled “Requiem for the American Dream.” Requiem means an act or token of remembrance. This documentary opened my eyes to a lot of things that I already kind of knew but didn’t want to believe. It’s about this idea of “The American Dream” that so many American’s believe in, especially younger generations, and that sadly just doesn’t really exist anymore.

I shouldn’t say that. By definition, “The American Dream” means the ideal that every US citizen should have an equal opportunity to achieve success and prosperity through hard work, determination, and initiative. Dreams do exist. Goals do exist. Hard work, dedication, passion, consistency and positivity will always take you to where you want to be. Opportunity is around you everywhere. You ALWAYS have the chance to change your life and bring yourself to where you want to be in your life to be. Unfortunately, some people will have a longer journey to accomplish their dreams but with enough motivation and ambition, anything is possible. Your dream should be what YOU want to do. 

Now let me ask you this, do you truly think that the definition above is true? Do you truly think that EVERY SINGLE US CITIZEN has the equal opportunity to achieve success and prosperity through hard work, determination, and initiative? I honestly don’t really think so. When the idea of the “American Dream” was established it was a completely different time than what we are currently experiencing.

The term “American Dream” was apparently invented in 1931 by historian James Truslow Adams; he was referring to “That dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for every man, with opportunity for each according to his ability or achievement.”

In 1931-1970’s, the majority of middle-class success was determined by hard work, labor, dedication, and motivation. People with no background had a chance to make something of themselves and be able to take care of their family comfortably. Since manufacturing and industrialization were booming during that time frame, you could literally get off the boat with absolutely nothing, find a job, work long hard hours, and make a good living for yourself. Can we still do that now? Can we make something out of nothing? Like I mentioned before, anything is possible, however, it will cost you more whether cash, time, energy, or passion. It is not as easy to achieve.

Up until the 1970’s financial success was equally correlated with production. The more productive you were, the more money you made. Simple process, right? This kept everything in balance because people who were making money were improving society through production. In 2017, this is not the case.

In 2017, the mass amount of wealth earned in America is on Wall St., in politics, and in Hollywood. This country has turned away from being productive, moving all of our manufacturing and industrialization overseas. This, in turn, takes salaries & jobs away from the middle class and gives that surplus of cash to corporations and Wall St. It’s bizarre to me how we have gotten to this point and think where we are headed into the future.

So what do we do about this? Let’s put our heads together and figure it out.

Watch the video and let me know what you think.

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