Over the past few weeks of listening to, reading, and watching dozens of personal answers to the very question, I have garnered my own personal opinion on the topic. American Creed to me should be a common belief among Americans (legal or illegal) that we are all here to create a happy life for ourselves while helping out others in the process. In a nation that has never been harder to blend into, you need the people around you in order to make it. I am not an immigrant, but I know enough of them to realize that they gave their entire life up to come here and that is pretty powerful and makes being an American have more meaning.
Many of my peers already have it harder than I do and as a white male who lives a comfortable life in suburban Michigan, I have an unfair advantage and I am often reminded of it. I was once told I carry a “snobby entitlement” just because of the position I was lucky enough to be born into. Although I never really experienced major struggles as a child I still feel an immense pressure to succeed and not feel like a waste. That’s part of the beauty of it all here in America. You have the opportunity to clear negative beliefs and carve a path of your own to create your personal happiness.
Given the current situation in our country politically, there is a lot of doubt over whether the American Dream is still alive. Although the traditional idea may be fading, I don’t think it is a bad thing. The former idea was based around coming here and finding success and gaining socioeconomic status. I personally believe that those are selfish ideals for an entire nation to share. What is truly important to our American Creed is a sense of unity among everyone. The feeling that there are people you can look to for help. If you look at the city of Nashville, there of thousands of immigrants pouring in. Instead of selfishly letting them struggle, there are people out there educating them and making them feel at home. It is simple acts towards people who are in need that do a great job of proving that this idea of unity and the promotion of equality are a part of a more modern American Creed.
Our country is built off of a deep, rich history that is unlike any other. If people act selfishly and let immigrants and disadvantaged people struggle, then we are wiping that all away and the country that was once revered as “the land of the free” won’t feel that way. My job as an American, in order to keep this creed alive, is to find personal success using the opportunities I have, but also to look out for others and not leaving them behind in the dust, something that has become too common recently.