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Is America Still "The Land Of Opportunity"?

1491 words - 6 pages

America, “The Land of the Free”, “The Home of the Brave”, “The Melting Pot”, “The Land of Milk and Honey”, “The Land Across the Pond”, “The Western World”, “Uncle Sam”, and most importantly “The Land of Opportunity”. America is still “The Land of Opportunity” because there is much more freedom in America than most other countries. There are no caste systems to limit what someone who is in America can do. Additionally an American’s destiny is created by his/her own choices, not the choices of his/her family or peers. America is a country founded by immigrants for immigrants, and although the Land of Opportunity has suffered an economic crisis in the last decade, it still maintains its reputation for being the greatest country in the world. The United States is still “The Land of Opportunity” because there are no caste systems, one’s destiny is made by his/her choices, and American freedoms are a part of everyday life.
Dictionary.com defines a caste system as “a system of rigid social stratification characterized by hereditary status, endogamy, and social barriers sanctioned by custom, law, or religion” This means someone born into a low caste cannot move up to a higher caste because of this system. Although a caste system is not a set of laws, it is almost never broken because the caste system has been in place for so long.
In India, for example, caste systems are used. The lowest caste is called Shudra, the Shudra are the unskilled and semi-skilled workers. They receive next to nothing for very labor intensive jobs such as farming and factory work. The caste after that is called the Vaishya. The Vaishya are businessmen and are more powerful than the Shudra. They still are paid very little and work in jobs such as market stalls. The Kshatriya class works in law and defense. They are policemen, firefighters, lawyers, and doctors. The Kshatriya caste has important jobs and gets paid well because they are very important to the Indian people. An example of someone in the Kshatriya caste is an owner of a very large farm. The Brahman caste consists of Hindu priests, religious teachers, and monks, they are respected greatly (Manian).
Caste systems can cause lots of problems. For example, people in higher castes are often involved in politics. The website livemint.com says, “Often times in India they [the Shudra caste] cannot vote or are not educated enough to vote.” Because the people in the lower caste are not active voters, there would be no stopping any laws that could harm them. The Shudra caste is the majority in India. If they were educated enough to vote, they could make their living conditions a lot better. In America there are no caste systems to hold the poorest beggar back from becoming rich. All someone needs in America is an education, some innovation, and a lot of hard work and they can become extremely successful.
In America, one’s destiny is created by his/her choices. In most other countries people cannot choose what job they get due to...

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