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Where is the Great American Dream?

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Where is the Great American Dream?
(image by Freedom Tracks Records)

Today, there is a lot of talk about the wonders of science and technology, with little mention of any downside. The same science used to create medicine and jumbo jets has also resulted in nuclear and bio weapons, and has left our planet polluted possibly beyond repair. A science that produced the world-wide web and remote-controlled devices, has created an alternate reality where people interact, face-to-face, less and less.

Modern technology is making us more introverted, self-engaged, and lost within our own "virtual" existence. This can be dangerous on many levels, creating a social environment with less and less love and feeling for each other. It seems like American society is becoming less and less friendly; a society where everybody talks and nobody listens.

I was raised in working-class neighborhoods in the Los Angeles area, where the majority of families were supported by a single wage-earner's income. Yet I never once heard of a child without access to health, dental, and optical care. Out of 3800 mostly working-class students in my high school, I never heard of a single one who was either hungry or homeless.

The term "homeless" was essentially off the public radar in Southern California until after I graduated from high school in 1968. I don't recall this word being mentioned in any media or in any conversation during my entire childhood. "Poverty" referred to people living on Indian reservations, in Appalachia, Central and South America, and especially Africa. There was virtually no conception of poverty within our own blue-collar environment.

As children, we interacted with a large group of other kids outside for hours nearly every day. We often played after dark and in local parks without parental supervision or fear of abduction. We learned to interact with each other on a face-to-face, peer basis and experienced a healthy childhood reality.
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Kids today often spend a lot of time alone or with one or two close friends, interacting with computers, movies, television, computer games, texting, and talking on cellphones. Rather than interacting in real-life situations, our children are growing up in a virtual world of digital unreality.

Many studies indicate obesity, suicide, attention-deficit disorder, and other serious problems are on the rise. Every year brings more media reports of growing school and public-space violence. Our nation is artificially divided by a profit-driven media into "red" and "blue" sides, even though the vast majority of us share common complaints about corrupt leaders and concerns of our children's future.

Today, many Americans working two or more jobs don't earn nearly enough to provide what working-class citizens once took for granted. Meanwhile, American cities are "dealing" with growing poverty by arresting and criminalizing the poor. Apparently, we incarcerate a greater percentage of our population than any other nation on earth.

Albert Einstein reportedly said: "It has become appallingly clear that our technology has surpassed our humanity." "Where have you gone Joe DiMaggio?" Where is the great American dream?

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Richard Aberdeen is a Nashville, Tennessee based author and songwriter and owner of Freedom Tracks Records, a multi-genre independent record label focusing on political and social issues, where the music is always free.

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The American Dream has gone from a full-length 3-D... by Dennis Kaiser on Thursday, May 29, 2014 at 6:55:41 AM
I very much agree with your response. You might f... by Richard Aberdeen on Thursday, May 29, 2014 at 9:07:18 AM
The American dream was destroyed when democrats vo... by Bill Johnson on Thursday, May 29, 2014 at 7:08:05 AM
The American Dream reached it's apex under Eisenho... by Richard Aberdeen on Thursday, May 29, 2014 at 9:14:56 AM
The Great American Dream was lost when the two eco... by David Chester on Thursday, May 29, 2014 at 8:31:34 AM
The American Dream requires opportunity in order t... by Richard Aberdeen on Thursday, May 29, 2014 at 9:11:38 AM
Opportunity you say?In 1947 liberal democrat FDR b... by Bill Johnson on Friday, May 30, 2014 at 8:30:25 AM
Like Junior Bush's 3 trillion dollar fiasco in Afg... by Richard Aberdeen on Friday, May 30, 2014 at 9:56:44 AM
"So the question that remain is, why would anyone ... by Bill Johnson on Friday, May 30, 2014 at 6:47:29 PM
And I might add, you seem to be so found of condem... by Richard Aberdeen on Friday, May 30, 2014 at 10:02:23 AM
So all conservatives are liars? Hardly.FDR was a t... by Bill Johnson on Friday, May 30, 2014 at 6:58:48 PM
Like every conservative, you haven't provided a si... by Richard Aberdeen on Saturday, May 31, 2014 at 10:27:05 AM