Young white people are losing their faith in the American Dream

The Washington Post

It’s about as hard for a 20-something worker to find a job today as it was in 1986. The economy is growing at a slightly slower pace, but not by much. And yet young workers today are significantly more pessimistic about the possibility of success in America than their counterparts were in 1986, according to a new Fusion 2016 Issues poll reported in conjunction with the Washington Post — a shift that appears to reflect lingering damage from the Great Recession and more than a decade of wage stagnation for typical workers.

That rise in pessimism among millennials is concentrated among white people. It is most pronounced among whites who did not earn a college degree.

The Fusion poll replicated the questions from a Roper/Wall Street Journal poll of young Americans that was conducted in 1986, the year Mister Mister topped the pop charts and Bill Buckner’s error cost the Boston Red Sox a World Series title. Both polls posed a series of questions about the American Dream: what it meant to individuals, whether it actually existed and, if it did, how hard it was to attain.

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