Can the American dream be a euphemism for the slavery of the 21st century or a strategy to flourish the economy of the great world power?
The historian James Truslow used the term of the American dream in the book The Epic of America of 1931. "It is not a dream simply of cars and high wages, but a dream of a social order to which men and women can aspire without regard to fortuitous circumstances of his birth or position". Over the years, the American dream became the achievement of safe work, decent housing, education for children, health services, and transportation. What started as an idea to boost the US economy and create an environment of post-war opportunities may be broken today.
Leer en español: El sueño americano está sobrevalorado
The American dream was not only for the Americans, but it came to Latin America and the rest of the world to say that achieving success requires a competitive environment that only the United States seems to have. We saw it in movies, on television, and in political and social movements that sold the land of an equal opportunity system. However, does the American dream show both sides of the coin?
Currently, the reality is different; the other side of the coin came to light. The technology came and with it the increase in productivity with a huge expectation for generations to have a higher level of income and consumption than previous generations. This is not a secret for millennials who earn 20% less than their parents at the same age according to a Young Invicibles study. A generation gap that affects millennials who pursue the American dream but do not have financial security, they have student debts and the system does not work in their favor. On the other hand, technology is equal to consumption that always results in inequality.
If there is something that is needed to sustain the idea of the American dream, it is the lower social class that works to provide the services of those closest to the American dream. In this group, immigrants do not only enter because technology is joined by the diversity of culture. You can find white Americans who do not achieve the profile to achieve success in the United States, because the reality is that many immigrants do achieve safe work, education for their children, and a dream of aspiration regardless of occasional circumstances.
Elon Musk was born in South Africa and is the genius behind PayPal, Tesla Motors and SpaceX. The story of Jan Koum, the co-founder of WhatsApp, is a journey from poverty to wealth in Ukraine, who reached a successful American dream. In this way, a consistent phenomenon of the American dream enters and it is the similarity in these social groups that translates into job insecurity, little capacity for recovery, and the loss of a social status in the North Americans themselves.
Those who have abandoned the American dream or the idea of it do so because the system does not behave as it did in 1931 or after World War II. The number of Latin Americans moving to the United States continues to rise, as do the figures for migrations to Europe, Asia, and even Latin American countries because now these territories have their own economies, emerging markets, and more efficient models. What it cannot be left aside is the development factor. The best opportunities are usually in developed countries and that is an advantage for the United States because if the American dream exists, it undoubtedly requires sacrifices. Can the American dream be a euphemism for the slavery of the 21st century or is it still a strategy to flourish the economy of the great world power?
LatinAmerican Post | Diana Ramos