Saturday, March 7, 2009

American Dream Expanded

What is the American Dream? To be able to live your life as you see fit, to achieve whatever you set forth to achieve, no matter what your socio-economic status is. To be free, to pick and worship your own religion. I believe that is the gist of it. And it is good. But does it always just have to be all about us?

In some minds the American Dream simply means make a lot of money for yourself, become a millionaire, etc. Unfortunately many people achieve this at the expense and toil of others, and with disregard for the environment. It often means a couple of people in the company ride in jets while the majority of their employees scrape together a car payment or take public transportation to and from work. Perhaps it’s time to take a hard look at the issues surrounding the extremes of poverty and wealth. This and many other challenges we face often have to do with inequity and injustice.

Every single problem that we have in this world has it’s core in the notion that one person is better or more deserving than another, that one person’s ideas, religion, culture, land, etc is better than another. This is the cause of all violence - from school yard bullying to domestic violence to wars between countries.

This is why I cringe at the bragging that goes on that America is the best, richest, strongest and most powerful nation in the world. It’s a divisive, arrogant declaration that ought to be removed from the conversation. It’s akin to me telling all my friends that MY family is the best, MY neighborhood the best neighborhood, MY family is the richest, MY husband the most loving and strongest, MY children the most beautiful and intelligent, etc.

Our so called friends wouldn’t like us very much, no matter how generous we might be. And we’d never have a real relationship with them. The affect that attitude would have on my kids is they’d feel entitled…..they’d be obnoxious brats.

On the other hand if we raise our children to believe that everyone is equal in the eyes of God, then they will be caring, curious, open and loving to all, regardless of what socio-economic background, race, religion or color they may be, what country they come from or what language they speak. Maybe that could be the World Dream…..that we could actually pool our resources together and come together to make a better world for everyone.
Here's a world flag available for sale from a company which I have absolutely no affiliation with and in fact had never even heard of until searching for a world flag online.......It would be nice if each country flew this flag alongside their own flag.


ArtistUnplugged said...

Thought provoking post, the flag looks neat with all the patterns and colors that are created.

Wendy said...

Ooh, I love this flag!!