The New American Dream
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

The New American Dream

I don't think I'm the only one who thinks the old one is outdated.

The New American Dream
The Minimalist Vegan
It's all part of the plan and you know it
Do the work for a rich man to turn in
You get what you deserve
And you deserve what you're born in
So quit complaining

You can be anything you want
But you're nothing at all, nothing at all
The American Dream is falling
Into nothing at all, nothing at all
~“American Dream” by Cereus Bright

The American Dream has always been a bit troublesome to me, and maybe these lyrics touch on why.

It’s inspiring that the American Dream says you can pull yourself up by your bootstraps, rise above your station and all that jazz. Theoretically, you’re never trapped in a low socioeconomic class. You can make your business, earn your way, follow your dream.

However, that same American Dream says a few less desirable things along the way. It says that if you haven’t reached a certain level of success, you haven’t worked hard enough for it. And since you haven’t worked hard, you don’t deserve success anyway. The American Dream says you’re not American enough if you don’t have a certain life outcome – you have less worth if your hard work doesn't pay off.

My third Living Room Conversation concerned this topic. And thank goodness for diversity of perspectives because I had a pretty cynical outlook on this one.

The participants of our conversation made a sort of proposal: What if our generation has a New American Dream?

What if we stop pressing upward financially, with pressures of success and a predetermined way to achieve it all? What if we expand the American ideal beyond starting a career, getting married, buying a house and settling down? What if the Dream leaves a bit more elbow room than that? What if one person’s winning their dream doesn’t mean a lifelong loss for another person?

What if the millennial American Dream is less about selfishness, extremity and achievement and more about moderation, fulfillment and fairness?

Maybe the New American Dream is about travelling to learn about the world. Maybe it’s about education – to learn about the things you don’t know and didn’t know you don’t know. It’s likely about pursuing what will bring you joy and meet the world’s needs, rather than stomping your way to "the top" no matter the costs.

I think the American Dream is getting a new face, and that makes it harder for me to hate.

One of the questions we talked about in our conversation was, “How are you inspired by your personal American Dream?” Our answers showed that the American Dream is alive and well, and it doesn’t fit into the same box it used to.

We were all women, all pursuing different career paths through various courses of study; and as one person in the group noted, ”This wouldn't have even been possible one hundred years ago. It’s only possible because of other people’s American Dreams.”

I can attend a good college although I can’t really afford it. Scholarships and financial aid and support and the draw of education and the grace of God have put me here just as much as (likely much, much more than) my own hard work and the passion of a "dream."

The American Dream can’t be as individualistic and unfulfilling as climbing a ladder to the top. It’s got to be more about provision of resources for yourself and others to help reach a goal that meets a personal and communal need.

Let's dream something that makes the world better.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

- Since my late teens, I have had wavy, unruly hair that is susceptible to frizz from heat damage.

- I've made a conscious effort to try and eliminate heat styling products from my hair regimen in order to do less damage in the form of split ends and hair loss.

- When I first tried Tineco's MODA ONE Smart Ionic Hair Dryer, I was immediately amazed by how quickly it dried my thick strands and how straight/sleek my hair was with minimal work.

Up to my late teen years, my thick, soft, silky straight hair was the envy of nearly everyone I encountered. I totally took it for granted till my hair began to evolve into being more wavy and unruly with random patches of wavy and straight hair.

Keep Reading... Show less

"Schitt's Creek" has quickly become an absolute fan favorite in the US and Canada and their seven wins at the Emmy Awards last night proves just that.

Keep Reading... Show less

10 Ideas For A Cozy Date Night In When It's Just Too Chilly To Go Outside

Because sometimes you just need to be snuggled up with your boo.


Yup, like most things, summer must come to an end, but just because summer is ending doesn't mean date nights have to end with it. Sure, there will be no more water park trips or picnic dates for a while, but surely there are many more date night ideas you don't need a clear sky and 80+ degree day to make happen.

That's what this list is for. Below are 10 ideas for date nights inside so that while you're stoking the fire at home this fall and winter, you're also keeping the fire alive in your relationship.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

The Steelers Are Honoring Antwon Rose Jr., A Victim Of Police Brutality, For The 2020 Season

The Pittsburgh Steelers have united by wearing the name of a victim of police brutality, Antwon Rose Jr., for the 2020 NFL season.


NFL players are permitted to wear decals on their helmets this season in honor of victims of systemic racism. However, the Pittsburgh Steelers have decided to unite and all wear the same name on their helmets this season: Antwon Rose Jr.

Keep Reading... Show less

I will preach this until the day I'm in the ground, nudes are an essential.

They are just as essential as toilet paper is right now and they have more power than just being a photo that's hidden on your iPhone. Nudes aren't just a way to turn on the guy/girl you've been hanging out with, but they can elicit a feeling of confidence and pure sexuality.

Keep Reading... Show less

During the pandemic, I've found out so much about myself by being single. I've learned that self-care comes first, I don't have to worry about impressing anyone else with my cooking skills other than myself, and it's perfectly OK to date yourself. So, for my fellow singles, here are 11 at home solo-date ideas (that are COVID-19 friendly) you can partake in any time you want to, to rock the single life this fall.

Keep Reading... Show less

Just when we thought 2020 couldn't get any more unpredictable, we find out that Ruth Bader Ginsburg has died at 87 of complications from pancreatic cancer.

Regardless of where you might stand politically, you can't deny that the was a very honorable woman, who has accomplished a lot in her lifetime. Writing majority opinions for many cases such as United States v. Virginia, and Olmstead v. L.C., she has paved the way for many women, showing that no matter what obstacles stand in your way, you can achieve your goals.

Keep Reading... Show less

These are just a few of my favorite responses! Please read and enjoy. This is probably some of the best advice you will read!

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

Coronavirus, The Arizona State Legislature, And The 2020 Election

The Arizona State Legislature might shift its majority in the House and Senate come 2021.


Arizona State Senator Martín Quezada spoke today on legislative changes that may occur in 2021 due to the possibility of Arizona becoming a bipartisan state.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments