The American Dream is Fading Away – Poll
Tommy Hilfiger once said, "The road to success is not easy to navigate, but with hard work, drive and passion, it's possible to achieve the American dream," but according to a new CNN Money poll, people believe that the dream is as good as dead.
Nearly six in 10 respondents said that the "Great American Dream" has now become impossible to achieve. Of the total young adults (age 18 to 34) surveyed, 63 percent said that the great recession was making it immensely hard for them to even perceive the dream.
The respondents also confessed that they felt their future generations would be financially worse off than them. About 63 percent of the surveyed participants said their children would not be as stable as they were on a financial level. However, a little more than half of the respondents said they were better off financially than their parents.
When questioned if they had achieved their version of the Great American Dream, only 28 percent said they had.
The experts credit the pessimism of the generation to the sluggish economic growth. Lesser jobs and lower incomes have driven the Americans into abandoning the "Great American Dream."
But what exactly is the "Great American Dream"?
Investopedia explains The Great American Dream as:
"The belief that anyone, regardless of where they were born or what class they were born into, can attain their own version of success in a society where upward mobility is possible for everyone."
Owning a home is often referred to as the quintessential symbol of success and achievement and therefore, the definition of the dream transformed. But according to Patricia Echeverria, the dream is changing and in the process of transformation. In a blog for The Huffington Post, she writes:
"Despite the odds for secure employment and financial stability, We have not lost hope. We are crafting a new dream: It does not look like a nicely trimmed lawn, or a white picket fence. It has nothing to do with owning houses or cars. Even as we struggle to pay the bills, and living in our parents' basements, we refuse to settle with what is."
Indeed, Americans now think home ownership isn't really the key to prosperity. Another survey sponsored by MacArthur Foundation found that 64 percent of the people believed that building homes would not make them rich and 43 percent said buying a house was not a good long-term investment!
"Americans no longer see homeownership as a secure path to building equity and wealth," Geoff Garin president of Hart Research Associates, the firm that conducted the survey told CNN Money adding that "concern about the housing market is very personal."