UA ENGL 1013 017
27 January, 2015
Summary of “The American Dream: Dead, Alive or on Hold?”
In The American Dream: Dead, Alive or on Hold? Brandon King explains that The American Dream is the possibility to work for a decent, better life for the forthcoming years. However, the American Dream does not continue in the mind of everybody. In fact, there are many people who have neither achieved this dream yet, nor do they believe that they will ever be able to. Those people who think the American Dream has changed because of a change in the financial status. Regardless of the economic problems, King still believes in the American Dream and defines it as an opportunity to everybody no matter their social status or where they come from.
Many people support King’s thinking. The New York Times reported that seventy two percent of Americans believe that is achievable to start from the bottom, work hard, and become wealthy (573). However, the definition of the American Dream has changed. In the past, people thought of the American Dream as having a nice house, a nice car, and expensive things, but today the majority of people have a different perspective. Their focus is on having a good job and having secure finances. For instance, many people rent houses now instead of buying them. King argues that this change is due to the changing economy.
One problem today that is contributing to the changing economic is that money is not distributed equally. King mentions Robert Reich’s idea that the majority of money is concentrated in the minority of the people. As Reich is mentions in the essay, if wealth continues to be in the palm of the upper class, the economic recession will never end (574). As king points out before, many people think that this dream is gone including economist Paul Krugman. King mentions that Krugman believes that the American Dream is not available for the majority of Americans (King 574). Krugman argues that there are too many government regulations and it is important to change the economic structure in order to break the line between the upper class and the middle and lower classes.
King also includes The New York Times columnist Bob Herbert’s idea that our monetary conflict is just the result of poor choices by the government that have caused many American jobs to be outsourced, a decline in