The American Dream: Life, Liberty And Freedom

1163 words - 5 pages

The basic idea of the American Dream generally has stayed the same throughout time, although the majority of Americans seem to take the Dream for granted. The first settlers arrived to the New World in search of a treasure: life, liberty, and freedom. This treasure was and still is the American Dream. Now people from all over the world come to America in search of the same Dream; some even die trying. People were not as materialistic as people are now; they just wanted happiness. As time passed, people became more materialistic and began to take for granted what they were born with. For example, when my papa was a teenager he purchased his first car with cash. Everyone paid for almost everything they got with cash, not credit like they do today. Almost everything today revolves around having credit. Most of the richest people in our state could not go to the bank and withdraw a couple hundred thousand dollars; they would have to borrow the money based on their credit. Although, there are many people that are very misfortunate and have hardly anything, their idea of the American Dream would be much simpler than that of someone who is middle or upper class. Almost a week ago my boyfriend and I were leaving Crabtree Valley mall. It was a pretty cold and rainy day, the kind of day that we would rather be at home cuddled up on the couch watching television, but we were shopping. As we were leaving the mall we came to a stoplight. Out of the corner of my eye I saw a tiny old woman kneeling by the corner of the curve. She was

holding a ragged cardboard sign that read “homeless, need food”. A doleful feeling took over my body, and I thought to myself, what would her idea of the American Dream be? Would it be to own her own home or have a fancy car, I think not. By this time, her dream would be a bit simpler. The American Dream changes from generation to generation along with technology and obstacles.
     With each generation that passes a whole new era arrives; one with higher demands and stresses of everyday life. The American Dream becomes more distorted and complex through time. The more we get, the more we want. What ever happened to being content and happy with what one has as long as they are healthy and safe? With each passing year people are becoming more materialistic and less grateful. My dad never had a hamburger when he was a child. A hamburger for him was like caviar to me. His family could not afford such a food. It was a food for the wealthy. Now hamburgers cost proximally fifty-nine cents and can be obtained from almost any fast food chain. As time changes, so do the wants of the people. Most people in their fifties and sixties want peace, love and happiness, this generation wants money, money and more money at almost any expense. It seems as if everything is centered on money and materialistic objects in one way or another. I have never actually thought about how old I was until about two weeks before...

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