The American Dream Essay Example

Azar Nafisi, a professor of English literature and Iranian scholar stated “The negative side of the American dream comes when people pursue success at any cost, which in turn destroys the vision and the dream.” Dating as far back as when America began to be recognized as a profitable nation, America has had a profound reputation to many as the land of opportunity. People from around the globe took the journey in search of economic success. As people asked for fresh starts they dropped almost everything to acquire a piece of what America’s society had to offer. America’s increasing popularity also brought what Americans view today to be their culture and overall value of what it’s like to be American. Whether Americans were looking for new beginnings or seeking opportunities they otherwise would not have, the foundation of the United States’ birth the American Dream is no longer prominent.  

Although the American dream was easily attainable in the past, this idea is now nearly impossible to achieve. Within the article “whatever happened to upward mobility?’’ By Rana Foroohar she exclaims “for the first time in 20 years, the percentage of the population employed in the U.S is lower than the U.K.” (Document B) The statistic as explained by Foroohar proves that the overall employment and opportunity offered in the United States has declined drastically. What was once a leading attribute of living in the United States is no longer as reliable or as strong as it once was.

Another example from an editorial cartoonist named Jeff Parker who drew “The Great Gapsby’’ which blatantly depicts two men divided by job opportunities. Within the cartoon a sharp dressed businessman states “I just can’t see this “ever widening wage gap’’ you’re going on about’’ while another man who looks as if he works in a fast food place complains about working two jobs.(Document D). The creation of this cartoon confirms that people are aware of conflicting opportunities in the United States. In the United States society people regard the American dream as unthinkable and causes social barriers much like the entrepreneur and the man working multiple jobs to live comfortably within Parkers political cartoon. Through the evidence of both statistics  and personal judgment of American citizens such as Jeff Parker the American dream is unfathomable also and this day and age. Many do not have a positive outlook of what opportunities will come to be in the future of the nation. 

The American dream is no longer achievable as both economic and societal states of America have modernize into what they are today. Another point declared by Foroohar about the success of achieving the American dream is “– if you were born in 1970 in the bottom one-fifth of the Socioeconomic spectrum in the United States, you had only a 17% chance of making it into the upper two-fifths.(Document B) Even though people are free to chase their dreams and strive to make a better life for themselves, achieving the American Dream today seems like a lottery.

The idea of being able to comfortably achieve success in the United States are rivaled by three-fifths of people from less fortunate households not being able to attain the goal America is the most known for. To expand on proving that the American dream is no longer attainable Foroohar also explains “having the right parents increases your chances of ending up middle to upper class by factor of 3 to 4”.(Doc.B). This data proves that the American dream is even harder to achieve as a citizen with more complicated circumstances. This competition between Americans not only proves the social divergence but also leads to more people born into the middle class to basically steal opportunities from those who are less fortunate even if they work as hard or even harder. The American dream may have been attainable in the past with equal opportunity but through statistical evidence the American Dream is in fact fading from economic and social ideals of the United States.

The American dream perishing is a result of no one but the people wanting to achieve success. Within life it is instinctive to want to put yourself and others in the best possible position. This drive for profit to ultimately achieve sustainability has created a complex and extremely competitive population. The competition within the United States is powerful enough to divide and decide the fate of every person as seen `in document D.  In the final analysis the American Dream should also be referred to as a battle against others that relies on status, luck and perseverance of every person attempting to dream big as attaining the American Dream gets more difficult with every minute.



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