The rich continue to enjoy the best in health care and education whereas the others remain far under privileged. This gives the rich a clear cut edge over others in the society. This is just one example in Scotts and Leinhardt’s article that they use to show that even though the lines between the classes has become blurred, that they are still there and are possibly larger than ever before. Scott and Leonhardt feel that it is wrong to think that the chances of class mobility have gone up in the present. According to them, it has been proved that the opportunities to climb the ladder of success for the middle and the working classes have considerably gone down in the recent times. The American dream is a myth in todays present world. Although, due to rags and riches idea which has been encouraged as true by the media, most American’s still believe this to be completely possible in todays society. Although, The mobility from rags to riches has become quite unthinkable and improbable. Scotts and Leinhardt’s even state that Horatio Alger’s (which made his name synonymous with rags to riches success) was a “second generation Harvard man.” This therefore proves that even the man that is known with rags to riches, had no personal connection with the matter.
It is thought of that education and success in school is still tightly linked to class. This still remains true. “Educated are winning in a rout…” Although, the education of ones parents also matters. Scotts and Leinhardt say, “Parents with money, education and connections cultivate in their children the habits that meritocracy rewards. When their children then succeed, their success is seen as earned.” This basically means that parents that are already successful, teach their children the keys to success and then set them up for it. As generations go on, the secrets to success continue to get passed on and continue to grow. Therefore, the higher-class families tend to stay high class. Scotts and Leinhardt compare the different attributes that are “handed to” individuals that are linked to class (such as education, income, occupation, and wealth) as a deck of cards. A child may get the same cards as his parents, but then pick up his own “aces” in the future. “‘Being born in the elite in the U.S gives you a constellation of privilege that very few people in the world have ever experienced,’ Professor Levine said. ‘Being born poor in the U.S gives you disadvantages unlike anything in Western Europe and Japan and Canada.’”
Some of the attributes that make the lines between class so blurred is alignments in politics have been jumbled, people in both parties rise to social issues, religion classes are scattered, and many people from different races have risen to positions of power. These are some things that have pulled over the eyes of America to make it seem that separation of classes is no more. Many Americans have simple faith in the country and the rags-to-riches aspect. They believe that the USA is all about the American dream and that the U.S is progressing, therefore, social classes are no more or less than they used to be. “The slicing of society’s pie is more unequal than it used to be, but most Americans have a bigger piece than they or their parents once did. They appear to accept the tradeoffs. Faith in mobility, after all, has been consciously woven into the nation self-image.”
Through all of this, it is important to remember that even though it is hard to accept that the idea of fixed class positions in society, that “blind optimism has its pitfalls” and that to progress, one must accept. While having faith in the American dream is positive, it must not cloud ones judgment. But “without confidence in the possibility of moving up, there would almost certainly be fewer success stories.”