02 August 2009

The (un)American Dream

If the American Dream is owning a big house, a big car, the newest phone, computer, and television - at the cost of spending all my time working in order to afford these things, and spending all my time on the freeway in order to get to work to afford these things, and not having enough money to pay for healthcare because I spent most of it on the house and car, and not exercising or eating well because I was too busy working and driving... well, then, I don't think I want to take part of the American Dream.

In the same way that people look to America as a place of freedom and opportunity, I look to Europe as a place where I can walk out my front door and walk to a cafe to meet friends, ride my bicycle to the town square market to buy local fish and vegetables, take the train to visit the next city over, and live in a modest flat with giant windows overlooking the courtyard or bustling pedestrian activity, and never have to worry about replacing my car's tires or air compressor or fuel injection pump or the fact that I haven't been able to visit the dentist in over 5 years because I couldn't afford it or that I might be killed by a Hummer while riding my bicycle - well, then, I think I do want to partake in the European Dream.

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