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The American Dream Essay Example

Introduction

The American Dream (the dream) is a United States’ national ethos in which people should live freely in a free country full of opportunities for success and prosperity as well as upward social mobility for all. It consists of a set of ideals that support prosperity through hard work, including equality, opportunity, liberty, rights, and democracy. The belief that is behind this ethos is that regardless of circumstances of birth or social class, people should lead better, richer and fuller lives with opportunity for everyone as per their achievement or ability. The American Dream as was declared at independence is still attainable in the contemporary American society.

Modern America can offer private property rights and economic and political freedom which are the major factors needed for achieving the dream. With these provisions, people can make choices that may permit them to become successful. Individuals can be confident that nobody will take away from them their achievements through arbitrary force. The dream promises equality and freedom of making both small and big decisions that shape an individual’s life. It also offers freedom for one to have high aspirations and work towards achieving them and accumulate as much wealth as they can in a free atmosphere. Furthermore, it grants one the freedom of living as per their values. This dignified life can be attained if the populace elects into office political leaders who are true to the dream (Adams, 2012).

The dream is also attainable because one’s future in America should not be determined by their circumstances of birth. Whether one is a native-born American or an immigrant, they both are Americans and should access all the rights and privileges including all the opportunities for growth (Rank, Hirschl and Foster, 2014). What America needs to do is to ensure that these opportunities are equally available to all and that one is no denied on grounds of their origin. As long as one applies the right strategies of pursuing success, they should be able to achieve success that is commensurate with the effectiveness of their efforts. When opportunities are available and their access is not restricted by such factors as racism, anyone can use them to attain upward mobility.

Additionally, the United States enjoys a competitive advantage over other countries thanks to a number of factors. Compared to other countries, it enjoys relative geographical isolation and a temperate climate. Its population is culturally diverse and this is an added advantage to its businesses in terms of fostering innovation in a global landscape. As Taylor (2012) observes, the country also has natural resources in abundance, including long coastlines, arable land, and oil and these should be enough to generate income and food for its residents. These were the characteristics that were taken into account during the coining of “The American Dream.” Everything needed to achieve the meaning of the dream is available and all that is needed is for individuals to take advantage of these factors and experience prosperity.

Further, actual measures of welfare in America show that capitalism can propel the country towards achieving the dream. As a partial indicator of material wellbeing, the full set of electronic goods and appliances are possessed by 64% of households (Siebens, 2013). On the same note, 78% of households reported not having experienced any hardships during the year 2012. Additionally, “Many fewer households (72 percent) had no neighborhood problems with street conditions, traffic, trash or litter, abandoned buildings, industries or businesses, or smoke or odors” (Siebens, 2013). This implies that with capitalism and robust policies, the dream can be fully realized in the near future. As people continue being increasingly capable of meeting their basic needs and fulfilling most of their secondary needs, they continue getting closer to the dream.

Conclusion

The American society as currently constituted is in a position to realize the American Dream. The country is based on democracy and thus offers private property rights and economic and political freedom. Attaining the dream lies in staying true to these important societal tenets and ensuring that they are not trampled upon. Moreover, the nation has natural endowments and resources. Coupled with its diverse population and respect for individual rights as well as capitalism, it should be living the dream in the near future.

References

Adams, J. T. (2012). Private property rights and economic and political freedom. Piscataway, NJ: Transaction Publishers.

Rank, M. R., Hirschl, T. A., & Foster, K. A. (2014). Chasing the American Dream: Understanding what shapes our fortunes. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Siebens, J. (2013). Extended measures of well-being: Living conditions in the United States: 2011 [Ebook] (pp. 70-136). United States Census Bureau. Retrieved from https://www.census.gov/prod/2013pubs/p70-136.pdf

Taylor M. (2012). Is the American Dream a farce?. Jacksonville, FL: 5th Corner Publishing.

 

The American Dream Essay Outline

Introduction

Thesis:

The American Dream as was declared at independence is still attainable in the contemporary American society.

Body

Paragraph 1:

Modern America can offer private property rights and economic and political freedom which are the major factors needed for achieving the dream.

  • People can make choices that may permit them to become successful.
  • Individuals can be confident that nobody will take away from them their achievements through arbitrary force.
  • There is freedom for one to have high aspirations and work towards achieving them and accumulate as much wealth as they can in a free atmosphere.

Paragraph 2:

One’s future in America is not be determined by their circumstances of birth.

  • Whether one is a native-born American or an immigrant, they both are Americans and should access all the rights and privileges including all the opportunities for growth.
  • It should be ensured that opportunities are equally available to all.
  • As long as one applies the right strategies of pursuing success, they should be able to achieve success that is commensurate with the effectiveness of their efforts.

Paragraph 3:

The United States enjoys a competitive advantage over other countries.

  • It enjoys relative geographical isolation and a temperate climate.
  • Its population is culturally diverse and this is an added advantage to its businesses in terms of fostering innovation in a global landscape.
  • It has natural resources in abundance, including long coastlines, arable land, and oil.

Paragraph 4:

Actual measures of welfare in America show that capitalism can propel the country towards achieving the dream.

  • As a partial indicator of material wellbeing, the full set of electronic goods and appliances are possessed by 64% of households.
  • 78% of households reported not having experienced any hardships during the year 2012.
  • As people continue being increasingly capable of meeting their basic needs and fulfilling most of their secondary needs, they continue getting closer to the dream.

Conclusion

The American society as currently constituted is in a position to realize the American Dream. The country is based on democracy and thus offers private property rights and economic and political freedom. Attaining the dream lies in staying true to these important societal tenets and ensuring that they are not trampled upon.

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