In a new poll from Knight/Gallup, college students from around the country reaffirmed their strong belief in the First Amendment and free speech. But while it may be initially comforting to know that our PC-infected younger generation still understands the value of free expression, don’t pop the champagne cork just yet. Because a deeper look into the survey reveals the truth: These students are only supportive of free speech up to the point that people start getting offended.
From The College Fix:
Roughly seven in 10 college students regard free speech rights as being “extremely important” to democracy and nearly three-quarters believe colleges should not be able to restrict expression of political views that upset or are offensive to certain groups, the poll found.
Yet it also found 78 percent favor providing safe spaces from threatening ideas or conversations and 48 percent support speech codes that restrict some speech.
What’s more, 71 percent also are in favor of restricting costumes that stereotype ethnic groups and 61 percent support canceling planned speeches because of concerns about possible violent protests.
Uh. Yeah. That’s not free speech. That’s “free speech until I decide you’ve crossed the line,” which is the exact opposite of the First Amendment’s intentions.
According to Sean Stephens of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, the poll’s mixed results show that students don’t have a firm grasp of the real meaning of free speech.
“Survey data on civil liberties almost always demonstrate that people are supportive of civil liberties in the abstract but are often more selective in who or what (as in ideas or content) they grant these rights to when specifics are included. This is particularly the case for the First Amendment and freedom of speech,” said Stephens.
Well, exactly. And these students have been mollycoddled and brainwashed to believe absurd statements like, “Offensive speech is akin to violence.” Once you’ve convinced young liberals to believe in something like that, getting them to agree that certain forms of speech should be curbed or criminalized is a piece of cake.
And, if these poll results are any indication, leftists can reach their aims while simultaneously convincing their adherents that they still believe in freedom. Quite a coup.