What is the American Dream? According to Wikipedia, “The American Dream is a national ethos of the United States, the set of ideals (democracy, rights, liberty, opportunity, and equality) in which freedom includes the opportunity for prosperity and success, and an upward social mobility for the family and children, achieved through hard work in a society with few barriers.” This idea, which stems from the declaration of independence that all men are created equal, is what drove people to conquer the western frontier leading to manifest destiny and drove the wave of immigration into our country into the 19th century (according to the lawyers at http://visaserve.com/), which led to the industrial revolution in the roaring 20s, which was also inspiration for the Civil Rights Movement in 1964.
Does the American Dream still exist in today’s world? Although originally “all men” meant white men, it has now come to include all of humankind. The American Dream has shifted from what used to be about material things (like owning a car, owning a house with a white picket fence) to now focusing on creating a meaningful life by being charitable, giving back to the community and society as a whole, spending time with friends and family and being able to maintain their socioeconomic lifestyle.
Another shift in the American Dream comes from parents wanting the American Dream for their children, whereas now that these children are grown, want the American Dream for themselves. With more and more millennials now being of working age, they want to have a good income to support their lifestyle but they are also the most charitable and globally conscious generation. With that being said, there’s a chance that this generation turns the American Dream into something international.
What do you believe? Do you believe that the American Dream still exists or is it something that is long in the past?