We're excited to inaugurate a new Patch series: "Dispatches: The Changing American Dream."
Every day, the national media is full of stories about how American families, businesses, and neighbors are adjusting to these trying times. There are so many changes happening so fast that it's dizzying — spurring national debates about unemployment, foreclosures, debt, government and private enterprise.
We want to explore that conversation on a regular basis. Perhaps we can gain understanding from our neighbors as we see how they are adjusting to the challenges and opportunities being created.
We don't think there's one American Dream, but a multitude of American Dreams, which a multitude of people are working toward.
Looking out across nearly almost 900 Patch sites, we see businesses holding their breath deciding whether to expand; college graduates living with their parents because they can't find jobs; and senior citizens bringing boarders into their homes to help pay the bills.
But we also see bold new volunteer efforts, inspiring stories of local businesses that succeed because they innovated, and locals who've taken these trying times as a signal to engage more, not less, in their government and community.
At the purely local level, we want to know where we, as Greenbelt neighbors, fit along these fault lines, whether it be by simplyfying our lifestyles to reduce our energy needs and save money; growing our own vegetables — individually or as a community as has been inspired by the Greenbelt Community Gardens and Three Sisters Gardens; or scaling back on driving, by walking and taking advantage of the walkways and underpasses in Greenbelt from our inception.
"Dispatches" will be built upon the compelling vignettes and snapshots we unearth across all of our Patch sites.
And, of course, we want your help: Tell us what issues and what stories in Greenbelt go to the heart of your American Dream.