The youth’s flight from freedom

I’m a free speech absolutist. The First Amendment is one of America’s most valuable assets and admirable achievements. Unfortunately, 40% of US residents aged 18-34 (“Millennials”) support the right of the government to curb political speech if it is offensive to minorities. Not a disaster yet but a sign of malaise: the young in favor of governmental gagging. Unnatural.

On the other hand:

In contrast with American Millennials, those ages 18 to 34 in Germany and Spain are more likely to say people should be able to say things offensive to minorities compared with those ages 35 and older. On the other hand, in the UK, the younger generation follows the lead of American Millennials by being… more willing to allow government restrictions.

Let’s wait and see where it gets us ten years from now. I guess Germany won’t be 70-30 in favor of censorship but rather 60-40 or 55-45: at least some progress. As for the UK, free speech might very well go the way of double jeopardy and unanimous jury verdicts. In the name of a righteous cause, people will chuck away their ancient privileges and protections with a smile of complete moral satisfaction.

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