Another Independence Day is here, and we cannot but think about the opportunities and advantages of being an American. We have received quite a pile of comments on the subject from our dear players and although these are diverse in style, details and motifs, there is one thing that connects them all: freedom. Apparently, freedom is the ultimate value among Americans. By “freedom” we mean the freedom of choice and the opportunity to achieve your goals. The same concept appears in the Declaration of Independence, which the Founding Fathers left as part of the all-American heritage.
Independence Day and the American Dream
The God-given rights described in the Declaration of Independence are actually opportunities that people later started referring to as the American Dream. The roots to the meaning of the American Dream, we can trace back to the beginning of the 20th century. Namely, historian James Truslow Adams used the term in his best-selling book “Epic of America”, published in 1931. He said: “…that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement.”
Advantage Over Other Countries
America is, without a doubt, dominant country in the world. We are not referring to the politics itself, but to all other aspects that can shape the opportunities for the people to live abundant lives. The very fact it is, in a way, secluded from other continents puts it in a special category and gives it a certain strategic advantage.
America also features many nations and diverse cultures. The mixture of many different heritage values converging into one makes it unique. This is especially visible if we take a look at how many people from different origin countries came to the US and succeeded. Many of them brought a specific mindset or a skill. Remember Sergei Brin, one of the few people behind Google, whose parents emigrated from the Soviet Union? Differences among people and constructive debates give birth to ideas. Subsequently, ideas evolve into practice and the advancement is inevitable.
Lastly, America is rich in natural resources. There is enough oil, as well as land not to let anyone be hungry. The same resources generate income, making economies run.
Chasing American Dream Today
The question of all questions is what chasing American dream means today. Although people are constantly being reminded of equality, liberty, pursuit of happiness, we cannot overlook the fact that many things revolve around money. Equality is measured by income and living standard. Freedom is also deeply connected with money, although it may not be visible at first sight. The freedom to live your life any way you want to is in a direct connection with how much money you have at your disposal.
However, everyone is equal in opportunities. America is the country of great opportunities. Apparently, it is all up to an individual whether he will grasp it and succeed in landing financial foundation for living whichever way he wants. Opportunities are truly something to be proud of.
Downside of It All
There are no downsides to this story. Downside of it all could possibly be the same thing we all love: the money. The underlying factor of freedom and equality. It makes a life easier. Money can secure good living and safety. However, sometimes it masks the true values.
Thankfully, people are bound to recall the core values every now and then. It is very important to remember, however idealistic it sounds today, that once J.T. Adams (author of “Epic of America”) wrote the following when describing the relationship between an employer and his foreign worker:
“…Such a relationship was the great difference between America and his homeland. ‘There, ‘he said, ‘I would do my work and might get a pleasant word, but I could never sit and talk like this. There is a difference there between social grades which cannot be got over. I would not talk to you there as man to man, but as my employer.’”
America has always truly been a completely new world and we hope it will continue to be so.