The American Dream

The American Dream.  I remember when those words and what they connote made me stand just a little taller, feel just a little bolder, speak just a little more assuredly.  To me, The American Dream (yes, with a capital “T” on “the”) meant that anyone–even me–had a chance to succeed, to build a business, buy a home, save for a rainy day, plan for a decent retirement, send kids to college, achieve whatever success one dreamed possible for oneself.  If that meant financial success, yay! If that meant personal success, however you define that for yourself, yay!

The way to The American Dream was usually summed up in one word: “opportunity.”  But that was one packed word, for it meant opening doors for all races, both genders, and all religions.  It meant that anyone, anyone at all, should have access to the same opportunities as anyone else.  This is how it should be.  And we, as a nation, worked to make that possible.  We opened doors with the Civil Rights Act, we condemned gender, age, and every other conceivable discrimination.  We scrambled to “make college affordable”; after all, who can succeed without a college degree?  We fell over ourselves trying to make amends for historical inequities, inequities that had long-ceased to exist, but we made amends anyway.  We passed laws to enforce equality, to ensure that “opportunity” was indeed available to all.

And in doing all this (and more), we crossed a line, we didn’t level the playing field, we killed opportunity.  We killed or at least are killing The American Dream.  We shifted the responsibility for one’s success, even for determining how one defines success for oneself, to someone else.  We handed over our individuality, our cultural, social, racial, and gendered differences–differences we should celebrate and embrace–to another.  We ceded our personal identity–our very selves— to a larger, more homogeneous, more restrictive, more limiting body.  And we did it with smiles on our faces and songs of humility and pride in our tolerance and openness in our hearts.  Doors slammed shut.  Unsurprisingly.  For everyone.  Equally.  No one can really achieve what we once knew as The American Dream, not really, not anymore.

Every step we’ve taken as a society has slammed shut door after door, limited access to a quality education, limited one’s disposable income, limited . . . who we are as Americans.  Rather than standing taller, feeling bolder, speaking more assuredly, we began shuffling along, feeling guilty, whispering about how awful America is and what a blight on the world it’s long-been.  We stand in lines with our hands out, waiting for the federal government to fix our problems, pay our mortgage, buy us cars, feed, clothe, and support us.  This is shameful, dehumanizing, humiliating.

No more.

I am an American.  I am white.  I am a woman.  I am a conservative.  I am a Christian.  I embrace every single one of these, and I will not be cowed into apologizing for any of them.  Ever again.  I will not accept that my skin color, my gender, my ideology, my religion are something to be ashamed of, apologetic about.  And I will no longer accept any attempts to silence or marginalize me.  There is no honor in handing over your identity, yourself, in the name of the very things that make you who you are, and that is the manipulation we’ve been experiencing for far too long.  We are being told that our white guilt, our gynoguilt, our Christian values, our conservative tenets mean that we are to sit idly, silently, even thankfully by while our liberties, our cultural heritage, our very selves are stripped away.  We are being defined, allowing ourselves to be defined by nameless, faceless, soulless others. 

No more.

What do we have now?  A college-level education that is so dumbed down that a college degree is all but meaningless.  A tax system that penalizes those who work hard and rewards those who do nothing.  A government that has grown to such insane proportions that it is regulating what we eat, what we buy, what we drive, what we think.  A burgeoning poverty class, a shrinking middle class, a static wealthy class, and an alarmingly massive–and growing–political class.  We are paying for outrageous retirement packages for union and public employees, yet our only prospects are a pittance from social security (and not even that before long).  We are seeing our nation’s flag, our Christian beliefs, and our conservative values smeared, dragged through the mud, our citizens murdered, yet we are being told that this is okay and that we should be happy to allow these things in the name of “tolerance” and “free speech.”  All while being cowed and bullied by those who are happy to see our way of life and our own values and religion destroyed.

No more. 

We are a nation that prizes, or at least once prized, The American Dream.  We believe, or at least once believed, that everyone should have equal access to opportunity.  We know, or at least we once knew, that our path to our definition of success (be that financial, personal, spiritual, etc.) was a path we chose, a path we forged, a path on which we met triumph or defeat–but even if defeated, The American Dream meant that we got up, dusted ourselves off, and tried again.  And again, if that is what it takes.  We need to get back to that, and we need to get back to that while we still can.  Pruning government, cutting taxes, eliminating intrusive regulations that ultimately cost us still more of our dwindling paychecks, and putting the power back in the hands of the people are necessary for the rebuilding of The American Dream.  The government cannot fulfill The American Dream for the people.  The very definition of The American Dream lays bare the fallacies of that stance, reveals the inherent contradiction, demonstrates more clearly than anything that big government progressives are anti-American, anti-The American Dream.  The government can no more live your American Dream for you than it can get you into Heaven.  But wait, this Congress and this administration think it can do both.  Hubris? Insanity? Ideologues on parade?  I don’t even care what their fatal flaw is, only that it indeed be fatal to their political careers.

Remember in November, and do not forget in 2012.  We have our work cut out for us, but we can and will salvage not only our country but what it means to be an American and what it means to pursue The American Dream.

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26 thoughts on “The American Dream

  1. I believe it too, Fuzzy, that we can still save The American Dream. There are so many, many good people in this country. With values and who understand exactly what you spelled out so eloquently here. In fact, we have now surpassed a majority. To those who were too young to have lived through the Jimmy Carter/Ronald Reagan experience, we now have the Obama experience. Our youth are learning what it is like to step out of college to a job market that is dead. Our businessmen sit huddled, hoarding money. Through no fault of their own. They want to survive the Obamaconomy without going under. They will need their stores of cash to pay for Obamacare and other heavy taxes while we work to take our country back. The hoarders will hopefully have a big enough stash to survive to see the flip side. And they will then begin hiring again, once assured of stability and reasonable taxes. Our economy can take off again and we can all make progress toward The American Dream.

  2. Spot-on. We can no longer allow the Left to control the conversation and set the agenda. We must stand up, say,”No More” and never again back down.

    Glad to see you back. I'm sure I speak for all of us when I say you were missed over the last what seems like months

  3. Awesomely well said!

    Even my Apolitical wife has even had enough. We drove 2 hours to support a woman who is standing up for what is right with America, and is not afraid to take on those who think that left is the way to turn. In her area of Vermont, this is no small feat. We got excellent feedback from people, and only one door slammed in her face! A lot of people are very fed up with the “statist” Quo.

    In all though, her biggest foes are the elitist repubs! The VTGOP is shot through of good old boys, and cleaning that house is going to be the biggest challenge of all. And that is the biggest shame of all.

    Not that that is going to stop us from trying…

  4. Nice to see you back Fuzzy.

    There is no exaggeration in your statement. This is very serious and this is a pivot point that if we go in one direction, we're lost, and the other we have 'a chance'. Republicans won't get us anything. We need conservatives willing to take the heat and cancel out much of what the Dems have done to us these last 2 years and will do with a lame duck congress.

    As you say, it's going to take a number of elections and work with those elected to gain any ground.

    There are things that will come out of these bills and financial dealings with the FED that we won't realize for decades, much as how jimmy carter put the hurt on major American sectors like energy. The mortgage meltdown started with carter.

    Bernanke gave 30 trillion to wall street and the banks foreign and domestic mostly in the form of buying their worthless mortgage paper so they could have a 'do-over'. The 787 billion was effectively a mis-directional joke. We've been raped with telephone poles and haven't even realized it yet. Inflation will rob us blind.

    I heard on the radio today that local, state, and federal employees make, on average 45% more than people in the private sector. Add to that, the number of public employees has surpassed private sector employees early this year. I'll just stop here.

    Nice to see you back.

  5. Good to see you back, Fuzzy. I certainly felt the lack. The blogosphere was a much poorer place without you. πŸ™‚

    People must unite, but they must remember and understand what they are uniting for. Not merely to push a certain political position nor to simply stand against a rival political view. That's what was so interesting about the Glenn Beck rally.

    Caroline Glick correctly called it “restoring the American creed.”

    She wrote: “The American creed has two main components. First, its core belief is that America is an exceptional country and that the American people are an exceptional nation. Second, it asserts that as Abraham Lincoln first said outright, America is the last, best hope for mankind.”

    For a variety of reasons, Americans have become disenchanted with this belief. Obama and various Leftist politicians have taken advantage of that, talking down American exceptionalism, moving our economy to mimic the failed designs of European models.

    You're quite right. Americans should stand up to this. But they should remember why they should do this, and have a fairly clear (but realistic) idea as to what they wish the country to look like as they work to reinstate their American creed and American dream.

  6. Beautiful!

    “I am an American. I am white. I am a woman. I am a conservative. I am a Christian. …..”

    ditto that entire paragraph!

    Thank you for speaking for me and so many others!

    Thank you.

  7. Yes you're right as usual. It's really frustrating watching us go down a path which will lead us away from our American goals and the shinning example to the world. I just can't see myself as a belief drone like in all the old books and movies, THX1138 or Fahrenheit 451. I won't forget the dream and I will pass it on to my grandkids, Lord willing.
    Nice to have you back.

  8. FUZZY is back… God Bless you…
    I'm not sure if your prolonged absence was to get your creative juices flowing, if so, it sure as hell worked… That was one of the best, most thought out and thought provoking pieces I've ever had the privilege to read…

  9. Absolutely Brilliantly stated Fuzzy!! I believe with hard work that we can save the American Dream. Our Founders never gave up fighting for this nation and against tyranny. WE must follow in their footsteps and continue fighting the good fight against the Obama Regime and tyranny so that we may revitalize and renew this great nation.

  10. @ Opus, hey Girl! You are so right, we are a majority, but we've been silent and complacent for too long, bullied and cowed and silenced. No more! Stability is key for businesses, big and small, and once we restore that, I agree that our economy will improve. BO's stupid “incentives” just underscore how little he understands business (gee, why not hire someone for $40k a year and get a whole one-time $1,000 tax break? D'oh!).

    @ Deekaman, thanks so much. I missed you all very much, as well.

    @ Toaster 802, we'll deal with the elitist repubs (who tend to be big government, big spending progressives, hmmm), but now's the time to unseat the leftist loons. We'll unseat the rightist loons later, when we have some sanity restored πŸ™‚

    @ Kid, heyas, my friend. I don't think it's an overstatement to say that we, as a nation and as a people, are at a crossroads. Or perhaps, we were, but we woke up before we were shoved down the wrong path. Now, the leftist loons think they have the control, are leading this nation into decline, but we took the right path (in both senses of the word). We'll pull it all back, I do expect a bit of over correction to the right, but given the alternative, I can live with that . . . for a while. πŸ™‚

    @ Odie, you make a girl blush. Thank you very much. I've missed blogging and missed each of you wonderful patriots more than I can express.

  11. @ Yukio, aw, thanks, you are too kind. πŸ™‚ I've missed you, as well. And you are, as often is the case, quite right, we do need to be clear and realistic about what it is we are planning to restore, and a belief and pride in American exceptionalism is a damned fine place to start.

    Yep, I said it. America is (or was and will be again) exceptional, and her people are (or were and will be again) exceptional people who compose an exceptional nation. And I happen to agree with Lincoln that we are the world's last best hope for mankind (hell, the friggin' world believes that, too, at least the free world does). And I happen to agree with President Reagan that we are (or were and will be again) a shining city upon a hill. Getting back to that is precisely what we need to do as a nation and as a people.

    These things are exactly what is right and good about America. We are (I'll speak in present tense, but you get the drift of my thinking) an exceptional nation: freedom is not the norm in the world, The American Dream (based in individual accomplishment and opportunity for all) is a singularly American dream for which people still risk their lives simply to step on our shores, capitalism and the free market work (as long as the government doesn't strangle them) and have made us the richest, most innovative, most technologically-advanced (well, that's dwindling, and Japan is definitely taking the lead there), and most giving (our big bad businesses and our people, as well as our government, give more aid to people around this world than any other). America stands out in this world, head and shoulders above (yes! “above”) every other nation. Why not say it? Why not take pride in that? Why not be proud of our country? I sure am.

    Does this mean that we don't learn from our mistakes of the past? Of course not, nor does it mean repeating those mistakes, but it does mean a clear (and realistic) view of every other nation in this world. Show me one that has done more good in the world. Show me one that has not done horrible things, made terrible mistakes. Show me one that has not condoned slavery, that has not invaded and taken the land of other nations, that has not done any of the things for which America is so often abused for. Just one. And Switzerland doesn't count. πŸ˜‰ Geez, if I hear one more South American loon talk about how much they hate European gringos (where the hell do they think they came from? Who do they think was on that land before they landed in their Spanish and Portuguese ships?). I'm sick to death of the holier than thou attitude of every country in this world bashing America. Not one of them is any better and most are a good deal worse.

    Geez, I've wandered totally off your point and into Rantville. SO not directed at you, dear Yukio, just Fuzzy rantings. πŸ™‚

  12. @kingshamus, thanks so much! πŸ™‚

    @Pedaling, and thank YOU!

    @heyman, my dear friend! Wonderful to see you, and I know that you will not forget and will pass on the dream to your grandkids. You're a patriot and an American!

    @Born Again American, you are too too kind. How I've missed you. πŸ™‚

    @Teresa, thank you so much! We are in our fight against tyranny right now (as we are all aware), and we will certainly prevail.

  13. Dear Fuzzy,

    That Was Beautiful!

    That was as good as if not better than anything (TL) and I heard at 8/28!

    I am typing this standing up, the only way of giving you a standing ovation!

    It is people like you who will not allow The American Dream to die!

    Wecome back and God Bless!

    Lock & Load!!!

    Sons & Daughters of Liberty Unite!!!

  14. Fuzzy, what everyone else said!

    You certain speak for me. I NEVER let those who want to destroy America and her values make me feel ashamed. The make me feel very mad and fed up! I speak for all of us. We'll show those who plot to make us a 3rd world cesspool on NOv. 2nd. Welcome back, don't be a stranger.

  15. As an immigrant, the thought of The American Dream captured my imagination and for a while, before I got my green card, I saw myself as one of those immigrants of old, coming from their homeland to America, Land of Opportunity, living the dream from the most humble beginnings. However, I lost that idea and being unemployed has had me in something of a funk for almost a year, now. The slow decent of this country, even in the ten short years I have been living here, under the “guidance” of the current crop of political hacks that are in it more for themselves than The People, has aided in that funk.

    Now, I have read this post and, yes its late, but I can feel that Dream spirit rising again.

    Thanks! *s*

    Oh… and welcome back, too! πŸ˜‰

  16. @Bunni Toes, that 3rd world cesspool thing is not far from the truth . . . the bizarre thing is that we send so much aid to nations in need now, and the gravy train ends when we are a nation seeking aid. Morons. The lot of them.

    @ Kerry, yay! I've missed you mightily, as well. And thank you. *hugs*

    @ Dudge, thanks for sharing this, I sometimes forget that you're all foreign and stuff (*wink*), but yes, someone wrote in a drive by about how much our country has changed even since our own childhoods, but you're right, it's been a really noticeable decline in the past 10 years. So sad. But hey, regarding your nearly year long funk, I can relate all too well. We'll pull through this not so bright and shining time, and we'll both fulfill our American Dream. We may be down, but we're damn sure not out.

  17. @ L, my biggo apologies for missing your so marvelous and too sweet comment. I'm not really good with comment moderation (but I just can't stand the Asian porn links anymore). Anyway, thank you so so much; I've been missing you guys, too. I wish I could have made 8/28. *sigh*

    @ Janie Lyn, ugh, missed yours, too, what a mess this moderation is becoming. But thank you so much. You're too kind. πŸ™‚

  18. @Yukio, heh, moi jest? nevah. And [insert snarky comment re: your being “tired of America”] *wink*

    @pjMom, omg, hi my friend! Yes, I'm back, and thank you so much for your kind words and warm welcome. Yay!

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