Some people might agree that the American dream still exists, while others don’t or they have different beliefs. The American dream is one of the most controversial themes in the United States. I totally agree that the American Dream is still on, though we need to work a little more to make it happen. I recently read a quote by Senator John Kerry that relates two articles that I have read in the past about the American dream: “We believe that what matters most is not narrow appeals masquerading as values, but the shared values that show the true face of America; not narrow values that divide us, but the shared values that unite us: family, faith, recognition, hard work, good government, opportunity, and responsibility for all, so that every child, every adult, every parent, every worker in America has an equal shot at living up to their God-given potential. That is the American dream and the American value.” The first article is called “Is the American Dream Over?” by Cal Thomas. This talks about interesting ways of how to make this country a little better but with some kind of rules with which I agree.
The other article is called “The American Dream: Dead, Alive, or on Hold?” by Brandon King, which also talks about the American dream and the dramatic differences in social class which are breaking up America. Themes such as responsibility, recognition, and government make a connection with both authors in the American dream. In Thomas article, he expresses himself about how he feels towards the causes of the American dream. Cal believes that the American dream still exists but it will be hard to recover; it should be upon the individual American’s hands to create. In Senator Kerry’s quote, he talks about responsibility, which connects with Cal’s article.
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Cal says: “The rules are known to previous generations: studying and staying in school; achieving at least an undergraduate degree; avoiding drugs that harm your mind and body; getting married before you have children and working hard to stay married as an example to those children and to benefit society; saving and investing for retirement so as not to burden taxpayers and relatives; living within one’s means; demonstrating personal honesty and professional integrity, which comes from character developed in one’s youth, usually with a sense of right and wrong once imposed by parents and affirmed by culture” (Cal 570).
What Cal is saying here is that we need some kind of rules so America can run well and this kind of rules that he is saying means responsibility.
Studying and staying in school is a good advice that Cal gives us to change the American dream. When you stay in school and study hard you will have more chances to graduate and have a better future so then you will be part of the American dream and get much further. For example, how would you get a good job without having at least an undergraduate degree? It will be hard to find a good job with that background. America needs smart people, people who want to become better in life and want to change this country with their knowledge. We can’t just live our lives without responsibility because everything will be a mess, and I totally agree with Cal’s quote, that we should follow some rules to make this country better. In the same way as the article “The American dream Dead, Alive, or on Hold?” by Brandon King also talks about the American dream. I relate his article with Senator Kerry’s quote since it talks about responsibility. What is responsibility? Responsibility is having a duty to deal with something.
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King says: “Despite the recent recession, Thomas and others like him have faith that as long as people believe they have a chance of becoming better off than they are today, then the American Dream is intact. Instead of trying to interfere with the enterprise that creates jobs and growth, we should rely on the values of the American Dream: that anybody can clime out of hardship and achieve success” (King 577).
In other words, King is saying that no matter what kind of hopes Americans have, this will not change until people with power do something. This is called not having responsibility and waiting for others to survive or create something for you. I disagree with King’s argument because responsibility should be something that will help you overcome.
It’s not good to wait for something or someone to create a new job for you. People should start realizing that in order to change the country they should be more responsible. If you don’t step up with responsibility, you will always depend on someone. Something that really catches my attention in life is recognition. In order to know how bad your life or your job is going, you have to recognize and take action to make it better. Senator Kerry talks about “recognition” in his quote, which relates to the article of Cal Thomas. Thomas talks about how bad America is and we have to recognize the causes of why this country is going bad. Thomas shares a quote from Herbert that says: “America will never get its act together until we recognize how much trouble we’re really in”
Accordingly to Cal, he agrees with Herbert’s quote about realizing that America is in danger because they both think that there should be changes in America in order to have the American dream back. I also agree with both of them because in order to change something you have to recognize what are you doing wrong and take action to make it better. For example, we need to realize that this country needs help since there is people that are not responsibly with their actions. If we provide help such as being responsible, or at least demonstrating personal honesty, I’m sure that this country will change. I’m really concerned about some people who don’t realize how bad sometimes a situation can be. For example, in King’s article he talks about fixing the economy but in a non-logical way or in small words, changing a little of the government system in other for him to be satisfied. I don’t agree with King’s argument about fixing the economy the way he wants. King says: “I believe that we should keep in mind the ways in which large business and financial institutions enable many others to attain economic stability and security.
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For example, providing money to business may encourage them to hire more people, thereby increasing job opportunities” (King 575).
In other words, King believes that providing money to business, more people will have an opportunity to get a job. In my opinion, I don’t think King is right because he doesn’t see that we need more than providing money to business because that will cause people to be useless, and what we really need is discipline and responsibility to help this country and make the American dream can come back to us. What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the word “government”? When I hear government I think about different beliefs, opinions, and things that they are doing right or wrong. For example in the article of Cal Thomas, he talks about the government in the American dream, which he doesn’t agree with the government’s beliefs.
He believes that the government has part of the fault of why the American dream is not the same as before. In Cal’s article he states: “Setting aside war, which was imposed on America, the eclipse of liberalism’s American dream has been largely cause by expanding, encroaching, over-taxing, over-spending, and over-regulating government. This has produced a country of government addicts with an entitlement mentality. These twin maladies have eroded self-reliance, individual initiative, and personal accountability”(Cal 569).
According to Cal, he is against the government involving itself in the American’s life and basically he is telling us that the American dream should be up to the Americans shoulders to create. For example, we can’t have a good life when the government is overtaxing us and spending that money in things that doesn’t help the country. They are the authority and they should know better that the country needs help.
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Cal also thinks that the American dream is still alive but only if we take the first step such as conserving measures to put into place quickly. Would you prefer to get paid and live from others money? It sounds good to me, but what is wrong with that? In the article of Brandon King, he says: “Some, however, argue that raising taxes on the rich and in American’s wealthy business is an effective means of closing the income gap”(King 576).
King’s point is that raising taxes on the rich the economy and the opportunities will change. I totally disagree with King’s argument because I think its unfair that other people scarifies themselves working long ours and getting pay for their work when someone else is not working and only wants to depend by others or the government.
As result, King believes in government involvement in the economy and he totally agree that if the government help us it will be an open door for the struggling business and the creation of new jobs which I think he is wrong, because the government shouldn’t get into the American’s life and instead they should make rules such as being more responsible to the country so the American dream can come again. In conclusion, I think the American dream still exists and I also think that we can improve it and make it happen again. Therefore author Cal Thomas makes more sense than Brandon King because everything depends on us and we can’t depend on someone else to be successful in life. The American dream should be an important subject that we as Americans should learn and also learn the ways we can help to make the American dream better. For example, responsibility should be the main thing that we can improve. Without responsibility everything will be a mess, same as recognition because if we don’t recognize how bad America is, the country will be the same or worse than nowadays. I think we all should put effort to help the American dream and realize how much this country can change if we all help.