Monday, October 1, 2012

The Rat Race Defers The American Dream.

The American Dream was “about discovery, individualism, and the pursuit of happiness.” Europeans, who escaped persecution from Europe, abandoning everything behind to come to America: the new found land, worked extremely hard, gained success and changed their unhappy lives to happy lives. No matter where you came from, you pursued and achieved your goals. It was not only gaining material satisfaction but also spiritual satisfaction. The American Dream as explained by Scott Fitzgerald in “The Great Gatsby” became instead the Rat Race that was made of three components: extravagance, insatiable desire for money and the absence of godliness. The American Dream was dead in the 20s as Fitzgerald portrayed. What ensued was a byproduct of the Rat Race. It was now money, titles and godlessness at all odds with no perseverance and hope.
The Rat Race is defined as “an exhausting routine that leaves no time for relaxation.” Do Americans have exhaustive routines that leave them without relaxation? Although that is debatable, we can state certain facts. 15% of Americans live under poverty.  Inequality had drawn the moral curtain between the 1% and the 99% or the 47% against the 53 %. Money and title became the driving force that motorized the ambitions and raison d’etre of living for many. The government and its branches, the courts and the educational system became extremely corrupt. Can Americans say that they are satisfied materially, but can they say that they are satisfied spiritually? That is beyond any debates. They are not! Suicide, a very hopeless act has increased. They are empty people; really hollow men and women who can only survive now on coping mechanisms. Drug addition and hedonism have possessed the people. 
That desire to acquire and acquire by all means has left many depraved. Ask any American who they trust. In schools the students tell you; “I don’t trust anyone.” In nursing and assisted living homes, patients and clients tell you they do not trust anyone. A guiding principle in American work places is that “ you should always watch your back” because no one is there to watch it for you, and everyone is there to put you down, so they can climb up to their dream.  Colleagues send little confidential emails to betray the trust of those who have confided in them. No wonder work place and school shootings are on the rise.
Americans drive out with big cars with no one inside, live in mansions with 2 or 3 people and hoard huge bank accounts, but life and happiness have eluded them. The more educated they have become, the more intolerant they have grown. They are empty people! I know that first hand as even mental diseases have quadrupled, 17% of high school students do drugs, and 50% are divorced. What an empty society! Americans should come back to the basics of human life and sane living. The Rat Race and American Dream failed many that is why they are killing themselves. Studies say that 57.7 millions are mentally ill. Now, that is just the number which has been diagnosed. Usually about half of that number has not been for consultation. So we can say that there are about 114 millions mentally ill Americans. Who is really sane in this country then?
If most of you get yourself tested for mental disease, one would not be surprised that you are mentally ill because it will merely corroborate your behavior too. The recession is wiping out the middle class, and the 1% are heartless than before, portraying the lack thereof of spiritual satisfaction which was another major component in the American Dream.
Back then the American Dream could be expressed in simple terms, everyone ; no matter where they came from, worked hard, they achieved a promotion and betterment in life and then they  enjoyed it, mimicking simple biblical examples and concepts like God working for six days and resting on the seventh and the Israelites urged to rest on the Sabbath. 
Unfortunately, the American Dream came to a point where people work 2-3 jobs without rest, 80 hours a week just so they can make more money to pay their oversize mortgages. That dream has now been totally replaced by the Rat Race that is run by humans instead of rats.
Americans, it is now time for humans to run their own race where we help lift those who fall along the way; a race where people trust each other and attained the pursuit of happiness from their hard work. It is time to rebring the dream so that we can trust each other. It is time to bring back the dream where one is satisfied with what they have acquired and can share with their neighbors who do not have. Isn’t it time for our homes to be restabilized? Do not allow the devil to defer the American Dream to the Rat Race. The choice is yours to make!

Until then, leave the Rat Race and run for the American Dream.

St Arrey of Ntenako

“Bonyfish beware because the same net that caught the jawless fish, caught the cartilaginous fish” (Hamilton Ayuk). Beware earthly paradise seekers because there is a serpent in every paradise"(Hamilton Ayuk). "It is not how well you know a person; it is how well you treat them that they will live longer and happier with you." Idle people write, idler people read, and idlest people read and whine that idle people are taking their time (Hamilton Ayuk).

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