The Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation has released a survey which shows attitudes toward communism and socialism vary significantly between younger and older generations of Americans. Millennials are far more likely to be supportive of socialism and communism than their parents or grandparents. From the Daily Signal:
80 percent of baby boomers and 91 percent of elderly Americans believe that communism was and still is a problem in the world today, while just 55 percent of millennials say the same.
Just 37 percent of millennials had a “very unfavorable” view of communism, compared to 57 percent of Americans overall. Close to half (45 percent) of Americans aged 16 to 20 said they would vote for a socialist, and 21 percent would vote for a communist.
The survey results suggest the views of the younger generation are based on historical ignorance. About a third (32 percent) of millennials believe more people died under George W. Bush than under Stalin. Millennials were also unfamiliar with major communist figures like Mao Zedong (42% were unfamiliar with him) and Che Guevara (40% were unfamilar with him). The results were slightly better with Vladmir Lenin (33% were unfamiliar with him), however 25% of those who were familiar with Lenin had a favorable opinion of him.
Heritage Foundation fellow Lee Edwards tells the Daily Signal, “It is the solemn obligation of this generation to educate the rising generation about the manifold victims and crimes of the deadliest ism of the last 100 years—communism.”
The Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation has created a series of witness videos in which people who grew up under communist regimes in various places around the world describe their experiences. For example, here’s the story of Nal Oum who escaped Cambodia after the Khmer Rouge took over the country in 1975: