Poll: More than a third of millennials say they’re “not very patriotic”
A little something to brighten up your July 4th weekend from your old pal Eeyore. You know, if you people had just taken my advice and deported the millennials years ago, we wouldn’t have this problem.
They’ve grown up in a bad economy, saddled with skyrocketing education debt, reminded daily that their standard of living may well be worse than their parents’, and forced to live with the reality that federal entitlements won’t be there for them when they’re 65. How dare they sour on the American Dream.
Of the many demographic subgroups tested, the share of millennials who call themselves “very patriotic” is easily the lowest. (Next lowest is people who aren’t registered to vote, at 25 percent.) Millennials also have the distinction of being the only group with a larger share who say they’re “not very patriotic” than who say they’re “very patriotic.” If I wasn’t already convinced that America will be a dystopian waste land within 10-15 years I’d be nervous about the future.
Never mind the age stuff, though. You want to know how red and blue shake out on patriotism, of course. Well, per YouGov, both Republicans and Democrats see themselves as patriotic, although of course the numbers are more robust on the right. Among Dems 33 percent call themselves “very patriotic” and another 47 percent describes themselves as “somewhat patriotic.” Among Republicans those numbers are 61 and 31, respectively. Relatedly, from Pew:
The surprise isn’t that Republicans are more likely to believe America is the greatest country in the world, the surprise is how constant the numbers are within parties despite the presidential transition from Obama to Trump. Normally partisans look at the country differently depending on who’s in charge. Not this time. Steady as she goes. Similarly, when YouGov asked whether you can criticize Obama or Trump and still be considered patriotic, the numbers in both parties looked alike. Not all questions about patriotism are subordinate to red/blue differences, it seems.
Although some are. For instance, similar numbers of Democrats said it was patriotic to criticize “our leaders” to foreigners both now and in 2013 when Obama was president. Among Republicans, though, just 31 percent say it’s patriotic now versus 52 percent who said so four years ago. This result, in response to a question about whether you can still be thought of as patriotic if you refuse to serve in a war you don’t believe in, also shows a predictable partisan divide:
Exit question: There’s no majority in either party for the proposition you can still be a patriot if you engage in civil disobedience of an immoral law? A mere plurality of Democrats say yes (47/30) while a plurality of Republicans say no (37/47). A lot of civil-rights protesters just got kicked out of the Patriots Club.