“Too much of the censorship we see on campus comes from students poorly educated on the value of free speech and university administrators unwilling to stand up for those ideals”
The Buckley Institute at Yale has released the findings of their national survey of college students. Some of the details are disturbing.
There is an increase in support for shout downs and speech codes. Why are students embracing censorship over freedom?
From the Buckley Institute (emphasis is theirs):
Buckley Institute Releases Ninth Annual National College Student Survey
Conducted by McLaughlin & Associates, this national survey of 802 undergraduate students attending four-year colleges and universities shows that today’s college students are more censorious than ever. For the first time in the history of the poll, more students support shout downs (46%) than oppose them (45%). Also for the first time in the poll’s history, an outright majority (51%) of college students support speech codes on campus, a change from last year when a plurality opposed speech codes (a 16-point shift in net favor-oppose).
“Too much of the censorship we see on campus comes from students poorly educated on the value of free speech and university administrators unwilling to stand up for those ideals,” said Buckley Institute Founder and Executive Director Lauren Noble. “Students are more censorious than ever, even as their fear of being cancelled remains high. America’s colleges and universities must do a better job supporting free speech if the pursuit of truth is to continue on campus and across the country.”
Students surveyed this year expressed willingness to allow university administrators to censor perspectives that might make them uncomfortable. In addition to the 51% who supported speech codes, 46% of students agree that opinions they find offensive from fellow students should be reported to school administrators, surpassing those who disagree (45%) for the first time in the survey’s history. An outright majority (51%) believe there are topics administrators or professors should ban from being debated on campus.
There is majority support for DEI policies:
– 63% of college students believe professors should be required to make statements in support of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion as a condition of employment
And trigger warnings:
– By a 65% to 27% margin, college students support requiring professors to provide trigger warnings before covering material “that might ‘trigger’ difficult emotional responses.”
You can view the full results here.
Quin Hillyer comments at the Washington Examiner:
The results of last year’s Buckley Institute survey left me so “bile-filled” that I wrote that “today’s college students are proto-totalitarian ignoramuses” because 51% of the surveyed collegians would not necessarily look askance at “physical violence” being used to prevent the airing of views they find “hateful.” This year, that number is up to 53% (with a record 45% agreeing violence might be OK and another 8% unsure).
And this year, for the first time in the nine years of the survey, a plurality agrees it’s OK to shout down a speaker (with another 10% not willing to rule it out). For the first time ever, an outright majority, 51% to 38%, favors “speech codes” to regulate expression on campus.
It would be fascinating to hear William F. Buckley’s reaction to this survey.DONATE
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