14.04.2024

64% of Americans view ‘cancel culture’ as mounting threat to freedom

The Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll exclusively shared with The Hill found that 64 per cent of Americans fear that agrowing cancel culture is a threat to their freedom, while 36 per cent disagreed.

Thirty-six per cent of Americans also said cancel culture is a “big problem”, 32 per cent found it to be a “moderate problem,” while another 20 per cent viewed it as a “small problem.”

Additionally, the poll found that 54 per cent of the participants were “concerned” that they would be banned or fired if they expressed their opinion on social media while 46 per cent said they were not bothered.

Cancel culture is often referred to as the practice of boycotting an individual, mostly a public figure, who is deemed to have acted or spoken in a controversial manner.

«We’ve had the term ‘boycott’ forever and ever. It just means, ‘I’m not going to put my attention or money or support behind this person or organisation because they’ve done something that I don’t agree with.’ That is not new, that’s very old,” said Nicole Holliday, the assistant professor of linguistics at the University of Pennsylvania, in an interview with NPR.

A majority of Americans view “cancel culture” as a threat to freedom, a new poll has found.

“It is a chilling finding that most people in the country now are afraid they would be fired if they expressed their real views on social media,” Mark Penn, the director of the Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll survey, was quoted as saying by The Hill.

“The public generally gives negative ratings to social media companies and sees the movement as more about censorship rather than trying to correct wrongs. It is growing as a national issue,” he added. The survey was conducted on 24 and 25 March among 1,945 registered voters.

More recently, TV presenters like Piers Morgan have claimed to have fallen victim to this phenomenon. He also believes that Sharon Osbourne, the host of the CBS chat show The Talk was also “bullied out of her job” due to cancel culture.

Osbourne was engaged in a row after she defended Morgan over comments he made about Meghan Markle on Good Morning Britain.

Morgan had attracted criticism for saying he “didn’t believe a word” the Duchess said during her Oprah Winfrey interview, including that she experienced suicidal thoughts during her time as a senior working royal.

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