You might not be old enough to remember this, but the 1960’s in this country were all about FREEDOM – free love, free sex, free drugs – free expression of any kind. Whatever you wanted to do and say was just “groovy.” For young liberals, it was all about being yourself.
My how things have changed. The Democrat Party still demands free love, free sex, free drugs – along with free healthcare and college tuition – but isn’t quite so keen on free expression, particularly if it hurts someone’s feelings – especially minorities.
Those bitter clingers with their guns and their religion? They’re a little bit more open-minded about free speech apparently.
A recent study conducted by the Pew Research Center finds “nearly twice as many Democrats say the government should be able to stop speech against minorities (35%) compared with Republicans (18%). Independents, as is often the case, find themselves in the middle. One-third of all women say the government should be able to curtail speech that is offensive to minorities vs. 23% of men who say the same.
Furthermore, Americans who have a high school degree or less are more likely than those with at least a college degree to say that speech offensive to minority groups should be able to be restricted (a 9-percentage-point difference).”
Of course, the study doesn’t reveal exactly what speech would be considered offensive. We recently found out even calling someone “hardworking” can be construed as an insult or referring to slavery.
If not more surprising than the Republican/Democrat divide is that 40 percent of young people in this country, the Millennials age 18-34 believe the government should have the power to censor offensive speech, the most of any age group.
Those old gray-haired seniors on the other hand, the so-called Silent Generation, age 70 and above, believe most strongly in free speech with 80 percent saying the government should NOT be able to censor.
As those “hippies” once sung, the times they are a’ changing…but I’m not sure it’s going in the right direction.
[Note: This article was written by Michele Hickford]