What you say is absolutely true, but only up to a point. Since I was born in 194o, I lived and worked during what for at least average White people was a sort of golden age. This was because for a time following WWII America had a monopoly on manufacturing and technology. Under these conditions unions were strong and men in steel plants and coal mines, auto and chemical plants and hundreds of other heavy duty manufacturing venues definitely worked.
But I understand your point. It has always been a reality, even taking American slavery and Jim Crow out of the picture, that many have toiled for peanuts so that a vey few might live in great luxury.
I don’t know that we are dealing with a myth so much as a mid twentieth century aberration in the US, one that created an unsustainable middle class, at least as far as the American style of capitalism goes. Where, however, there is a balanced blend of capitalism and socialism, as is the case in Scandinavia, a sort of broad middle class golden age is still being maintained.