American dreams...that seems to the be most significant problem of consciousness and identity in our people right now. This emphasis on attaining the American dream, which of course ends up Americanizing their own dreams. "If you are caught in the dream of another, then you are lost." Our people have become obsessed with American dreams, and actively work to trap and tangle themselves in them. The problems with these dreams is that they dictate the ways in which we think and act, and believe about ourselves. I attended a presentation by a lady who has collected three volumes of interviews with Pacific Islanders, titled "Pacific Islanders Talk Story." It is all about the ways in which Pacific Islanders deal with being invisible or tiny in big bad America. She discussed how we as Pacific Islanders need to work harder to achieve the American dream. How we need to figure out what in our culture is holding us back, or what doesn't let us succeed in America.
My question is, what happened to our own dreams? Why is having a good life in every banal sense an "American dream" only? This is the trap that this type of thinking places us in. If we are reaching for American dreams, then we are stripping ourselves of our culture and changing ourselves based on what America perceives us to be, and what it wants us to be. These are not natural, ideal, perfect dreams, and we should be wary of their power over us. These are the types of dreams which trap us, and force us into certain forms of cultural change, which meet the needs of an ideal, abstract, American dream, rather than the dreams we ourselves have.