The Problems of the American Dream: False Hopes and Hurtful Judgments




Murray, Elizabeth Tillar

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While the American Dream for so long has been built into the story of America, few have sought to question whether the dream is a healthy and attainable dream for our country to believe in today. The American Dream arose out of the idyllic and utopian stories of America. It quickly spread as a source of hope amidst a time of war and difficulties. The idyllic story of the dream has become more inflated and focused on monetary success ever since. My thesis aims to compare the teachings and belief of the American Dream story with facts. Statistics show at the same time as the American Dream has become more exaggerated, income mobility has decreased. My thesis explains we must strive for a more attainable dream, and we must do more to help people reach this modified dream. First, we should not teach that every person can become rich from poor. Statistics show that rag-to-riches story of rising from poor to multimillionaires are highly uncharacteristic, and these stories should not be the praised and searched for goal of the dream. Americans will continually be disappointed if this is the ultimate target, and, thus, will grow to disbelieve and resent the dream. Instead, the dream should be for all to reach a point where they can live a modest and sustainable lifestyle. Second, once we shift our focus on the American Dream, we can all play a part to help the struggling families reach this goal. While my thesis provides several recommendations for ways in which the government can help Americans be able to afford basic necessities in life, the dream is not just dependent on the government. My thesis encourages every American to help revise and implement the American Dream for all.



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