Dreams Of A Nation Essay

1294 words - 6 pages

Have you ever wondered what the American Dream really is? You may think of places such as Disney World, where all your dreams come true, or maybe even Beverly Hills where people have more money than they know what to do with and all the fame in the world. However, this is only one side of the dream that you’re seeing - the other side is much different and is a cruel reality of the situation. Adam Liley, a writer that lived near the U.S. border in Detroit, Michigan, had always been fascinated by the image of the American Dream since he was little. So one day he set out to see what he could find about this American Dream. What he found was not just a single dream but many different contrasts ...view middle of the document...

We have a distorted perception of America due to false or exaggerated media influences. They may cover what Kim Kardashian is doing but they do not cover what the thousands of homeless people do every day just to survive. A good example of this is reflected by the hooker that Liley met; people like this are thrown into our faces so many times that we start to believe that this is what America is all about. The hooker told Liley that she wants to be the next Howard Stern and have that same type of fame and as she called it “monkey business” is her dream and she’s living out her dream as we know it.
Other than the fame some people are looking for more realistic and practical dreams and a look at happiness in their own lives as the ultimate goal. Even though each person’s goal is slightly different than the other, they all revolve around what will help them reach more enjoyable lives. It’s a journey, not a destination, with a long road ahead that has to deal with more than just money. A dream can be just that; as one man had explained “it is a life that is exemplified on TV with the classic ranch house, family dog white picket fence, two parent family and backyard barbeques”. Living a life out of the spotlight is what they picture their American dream as being - just as long as they’re with the ones they love.
Adam’s journey took him all the way to Slab City where he found a lot of heart and soul but not much else. One man in the city believes that the American dream has been abandoned and now everyone is moving to populated cities - leaving their old life behind. It is not the same anymore and some people just happen to get left out of the dream, wondering if they are ever going to reap the real benefit of their hard work. It seems like there is no end and no beginning. This just goes to show you that a dream is nothing and that you have to work for happiness - just like Hunter, the writer, had enforced when they interviewed him. Things do not have to be glamorous but you do have the right to protection, safety, security and happiness in life.
Adam met people that were from one extreme lifestyle to the other. A real exception was reflected by a man who was satisfied with God and his religion and was the true image of God. This man’s name was Leonard Reed, a 72 year old who lived alone in a house he built...

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