The American Dream?

I live in the land of opportunity, in a country where everyone has the opportunity to better themselves through their actions and work. That is the essence of the old American dream, the dream that has been replaced by people trying and hoping for something they don’t deserve, a free hand out. There is the overcastting shadow of expectation that has replaced the hope people once held to. No longer do people truly want to work for what they dream of, they scheme and plunder, cutting as many short cuts as they can, to reach that dream position they are hoping for all the while missing the key point. The essence of the American Dream isn’t in the destination but the path to get there and pride that you attain along the way.

In a country recently riveted by scandals from several of the most fiscally successful people and corporations, this is all to obvious. Ideas that used to be so prevalent (for example; civic virtue) have been thrown to the wayside in an attempt to help people further themselves.

The other day we had a discussion of the American Dream and what it truly meant. One after the other concepts involving complete success, financial growth, class shifting, and even the humorous sixties style T.V. family. The ambitions of those students are absurd and un-thought out. If you look back to why our country was founded and what the goals of the founders were you get a much richer and all-encompassing image of this dream.

America is the land of opportunity, opportunity for you to make something out of your life. The country was set up with that universal and basic concept in mind, it’s very obvious as you read the frame work and the bill of rights. Contrast that to what students had said about fiscal growth or class advancement and you see where the problem occurs. If you base your life around the notion of the latter and don’t achieve you will fall into problems with your self worth and depression. After all the major goal you set for your life wasn’t met, was your life a sham? The truth is that with over a hundred million people in America not everyone will do better, for everyone that does better someone does worse then where they started (in theory).

If you return to the idea of opportunity being the American dream and each person being in control of his or her own life then you avoid that problem. For the only people who choose not to accept or seek out opportunity are those who haven’t met the dream. That is based upon choice, not about anyone but you has the option to effect the outcome.

Maybe the idea of this dream has changed to the masses, as some have argued, but I find that it is a mere interpretation of what people see as opportunity.

Take care and God Bless,
~paul