Blog #4 How to make it in America–“Get rich or die trying”

Throughout society hustling may be portrayed as something devious. We tie the word to negative connotations. In the music industry rappers talk about selling drugs and hustling on the streets to make money. I always viewed hustling as something that was done as a means to make quick money in which ever way you can obtain easy access to. Think about the people who sell dvds, perfumes, and handbags on the street corners or even the usual group of people who stand in front of the bodegas. Hustlers take on many different forms not just the form of flashy cars and entourages however although their trades may vary they all share common characteristics between them. They have the ability to easily convince people into buying their products with charm or even deceit.

Hustling is something sporadic and unconventional, it is characterized by a broad range of activities.  It is not a typical 9am-5pm job which may be considered honorable/respectable. However hustlers take on the task of finding a way to make quick money which shows immediate results. They don’t have to wait for a weekly or bi-weekly paycheck. Aside from negative connotations that come to mind when hearing the word, I found that hustlers are dynamic and innovative. Hustling as described by Veblen is a strategy which adds structure to our society.

We find that unemployment rates are high across the United States. More and more people are finding themselves doing odd jobs off the books because unemployment can only go so far for so long. While finding it difficult to land sustainable jobs people look for ways to make a quick buck. Whether through catalogs, from home, out of a car or even by foot people hustle. In order to make it in America we must hustle. As a nation of workaholics we find it difficult to stand still when receiving little to no income through unemployment or through mediocre jobs that neither satisfy us nor pay all of our bills. We fear being labeled as lazy or incapable. We constantly feel the need to multi-task. Keeping busy and having full schedules is what we do best. If we sit at home and do nothing we become restless. We must go out in search of something to do and become pro-active.

hustlingThe article “No Hustle, No Success” talks about mastering the art of hustling. It states that “the act of hustling means to act in an aggressive manner to achieve a self mandated goal no matter how difficult it may be”. In this article Yura Bryant talks about the hustler mentality as being essential to surviving amongst the declining infrastructures in today’s society. In fact, I believe this to be very true. Opportunities come to those who are willing to work hard and hustle even through  unconventional means. Yura Bryant discusses the hustler mindset as the fuel to the “American Dream”. He ends the article by stating “I am telling you without a doubt that you have to hustle hard to make it in these new times. We are currently in a rebuilding period throughout the entire world and only those with a keen sense of how to strategically operate a legitimate hustle or hustles will find themselves in a comfortable position moving forward”. I definitely agree as this gives light to the way that Vebelen presented hustling. It is truly an art and the hustler must display distinctive qualities. The next time I am doing my nails and someone comes in to sell socks or dvds I would look at them in a different perspective as this lecture has helped me to develop a distinct respect for them.

Attached below is a link to the article that I discussed previously. I definitely recommend it.

One response to “Blog #4 How to make it in America–“Get rich or die trying”

  1. Like you, my first thought when it comes to hustling is Cassidy and Jay Z’s song I’m a Hustla. So I immediately associated the term with drugs, and stealing. But like you said, nowadays everybody has to do some Hustlin. Simple things such as working two jobs is necessary to keep families afloat. I can only imagine the even bigger differences there would be in inequalities if people did not hustle. The article you found is great, and I completely agree, people can’t just sit and wait for a job anymore because modernity has made things really difficult, in order to move upward one must find many different ways to make money.

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