The 35th President of the United States, John F. Kennedy, said that “those who dare to fail miserably can achieve greatly.”
This idea, that Americans can achieve their wildest ambitions merely through hard work and the courage to take risks, is the matrix of US politics. The American Dream is the lullaby of a nation. And, if a politician cannot harness the rhetoric of the American Dream, failure is an inevitability.
Yet, what are the tangible realities that lurk behind this grand façade?
The infographs below each illustrate a unique feature of modern US politics not epitomised by the American Dream.
1. Gun Crime
Source: The Atlantic
2. Student Debt
Source: Top Universities Online
3. Religious Affiliation
Sources: ONS & Pew Forum
4. Incarceration Rates
Sources: American Progress & Policy.Mic
5. Stagnating Income
Sources: New Yorker, Multpl and FRED