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Nearly half of Americans think ‘cancel culture’ has gone TOO FAR... but 2 in 5 admit participating in it

Nearly half of Americans think ‘cancel culture’ has gone TOO FAR... but 2 in 5 admit participating in it
Most Americans familiar with “cancel culture” – deplatforming or firing people due to public outcry over a supposedly offensive or objectionable comment or action – believe it’s done serious harm to society, a new poll has found.

Some 46 percent of Americans think cancel culture “has gone too far,” according to the poll conducted earlier this month by Morning Consult and published on Wednesday. 

While just over a quarter (26 percent) of respondents claimed to have no opinion on the matter, those who thought cancel culture had overstayed its welcome dramatically outnumbered the 10 percent who suggested it hadn’t gone far enough. Indeed, many of those surveyed across all demographics disapproved – either “somewhat” or “strongly” – of “people participating in cancel culture.”

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Notably, just 27 percent were willing to state that the phenomenon had had a positive effect on society – and of those, just a few (six percent) would say that effect had been “very positive.” Just shy of half the respondents thought its effect had been negative overall, with most answering “very negative.”

Overall, 40 percent of poll respondents admitted to participating in cancel culture. Young adults aged 18 to 34 were much more likely (55 percent) than those over 65 (32 percent) to acknowledge their participation, and while half of Democrats acknowledged they’d participated, only a third of Republicans said they had.

Defined for the purposes of the poll as “the practice of withdrawing support for (or canceling) public figures and companies after they have done or said something considered objectionable or offensive,” cancel culture has been front and center in the media in recent months, as a flurry of high-profile firings have been accompanied by a seemingly endless parade of cringeworthy celebrity apologies for past transgressions on social media.

But a growing public backlash against the phenomenon gave rise to an open letter published earlier this month in Harper’s Magazine condemning the increasing “constriction” of “the free exchange of information and ideas” and the rise of forceful “ideological conformity.” 

Its credibility was dealt something of an ironic death blow when signatories began pulling out due to the presence of some “problematic” names – essentially defeating the purpose of standing together against cancel culture.

Also on rt.com Open letter against ‘cancel culture’ backed by ‘frauds,’ says Glenn Greenwald after authors ‘outvote’ him from signers list

Indeed, several of the leading lights of the anti-cancel-culture movement have been gleeful participants in cancel culture in the past, one of the most notable example perhaps being Bari Weiss, the New York Times op-ed writer who resigned from the paper earlier this month with a melodramatic letter decrying “constant bullying” by “colleagues who disagree with [her] views.” Weiss herself led a campaign while enrolled at Columbia University to smear Arab professors critical of Israel as “racists” with the intention of getting them fired, a scorched-earth operation decried as a “witch hunt” by the New York Civil Liberties Union. 

However, Morning Consult’s poll revealed a sizable chunk of Americans are utterly disconnected from the cancel-culture ecosphere, with 35 percent claiming they were “not familiar at all,” or only minimally familiar, with the practice.

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