A large plurality of Americans agree that cancel culture has gone too far and is having a negative impact on American life.
A poll published Wednesday by Politico found that 49% of Americans said that cancel culture has a somewhat or very negative impact, while 46% of Americans believe that cancel culture “has gone too far.”
The poll used the dictionary definition of cancel culture, which describes it as “the practice of withdrawing support for (or canceling) public figures and companies after they have done or said something considered objectionable or offensive.”
The poll also found that 55% of voters aged 18-34 say they have participated in cancel culture, compared to just 32% of voters over the age of 65. Additionally, half of Democrats said they have voiced their displeasure with a public figure on social media, compared to only one third of Republicans. (RELATED: How 1 Open Letter Laid Bare The Left’s Most Vicious Online Elements)
NEW POLL ON CANCEL CULTURE:
• 27% of Americans say cancel culture had a positive impact on society.
• 49% say it had a negative impact.
• 46% say cancel culture has gone too far.
• 10% say it hasn’t gone far enough.
• 26% have no opinion. https://t.co/VAf57C1n7k
— Kenneth P. Vogel (@kenvogel) July 22, 2020
The poll comes at a time when heightened tensions have led to a debate over the scope of free speech in the U.S.
“The free exchange of information and ideas, the lifeblood of a liberal society, is daily becoming more constricted,” they wrote. “While we have come to expect this on the radical right, censoriousness is also spreading more widely in our culture: an intolerance of opposing views, a vogue for public shaming and ostracism, and the tendency to dissolve complex policy issues in a blinding moral certainty.”
The letter was met with a response letter from over 150 people, including journalists and writers, saying that the signatories to the Harper’s Letter, were in part, motivated by racism.
“The signatories, many of them white, wealthy, and endowed with massive platforms, argue that they are afraid of being silenced, that so-called cancel culture is out of control, and that they fear for their jobs and free exchange of ideas, even as they speak from one of the most prestigious magazines in the country,” the letter reads.