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Today’s blacklisted American: Half of today’s students support the death penalty for some speech

The poll numbers, across all demographics
The poll numbers, across all demographics

This is no longer a land of the free: According to a new poll, half of today’s college students now believe that the death penalty is justified for some people should they dare express an opinion that offends.

Specifically, the students were asked if they agreed or disagreed with the statement:

Violence in response to offensive speech is not a new phenomenon. In some cultures, some types of offensive speech even merit the death penalty. Some speech can be so offensive in certain cases that it merits such harsh punishment.

As shown in the graph to the right, across the board, 43% to 55% of students from private and public schools, from all types of majors, from all levels of income, and from across the political spectrum, all agreed with this statement. The results were remarkably consistent. Tolerance was not their watchword, but oppression and dictatorship. If you say something that offends, half of today’s students feel justified in calling for your death.

“The college student disillusionment with free speech is growing at an alarming pace,” Buckley Program founder and Executive Director Lauren Noble told us. “More students are intimidated from speaking freely, and more students are willing to intimidate others from speaking freely than at any time in the history of the survey. In many ways, America’s undergraduate student body seems to be abandoning the very ideas that made America the great country it is today,” said Noble.

The survey is the eighth time the Buckley Program has surveyed students for their support for the Constitution and the furthest it has found students straying from basic American freedoms and values.

Some will take comfort by the fact that half the students don’t agree, but since the other half is enthused by the idea of violence and force to impose its will, the intolerant students are going to be in charge in the coming decades. The future does not look bright. You will not be free to speak your mind. And if you do, you will almost certainly face harsh punishment, some merely social, but increasingly legal and brutal.

The rule of this intolerant class will be strengthened because the students who do favor freedom also appear cowed. This group is no longer willing to fight for its rights. Instead, they increasingly go silent, and look the other way when someone is blacklisted or attacked.

As a result, the intolerant half of students will more and more impose intolerant rules that will shut down not only free speech, but free elections and free competition. Soon, this same large cohort of totalitarians will decide that silence itself is dissent, that if you do not enthusiastically declare your support for their agenda you must be expunged from society.

We shall all be invited daily to attend our Orwellian hate sessions. And if you do not, that hate will immediately be aimed at you.

Am I being paranoid? The introduction of critical race theory in almost all levels of society, corporate, education, entertainment, and government, proves that I am not. There are now political agents in all these industries and agencies whose only job is to make sure everyone abides by the racist political agendas of the day, and impose harsh punishments for any dissent. Please note also that I myself have already experienced an ugly but relatively mild form of this type of blacklisting.

Give such people the reins of power, which they increasingly have, and it is guaranteed that mildness will not describe their future actions. Genocide will come, as surely as the sun rises.

Orwell's 1984: today's instruction manual
The political instruction manual of the future

Those who honor freedom and free speech had better recognize this reality real soon. It is going to involve some real fighting and some real pain to win the coming battles, as the intolerant will be in charge, and will be quite willing to use force to maintain their control.

For example, assume you have never been political in any way but consider yourself in favor of free speech. Would you be willing hide a person whom the police wish to arrest and execute, merely because of something that person said? This was the choice faced by many in the fascist dictatorships in 1930s Europe. A few had the courage to do the right thing. Far more took the easy way.

I strongly doubt there are many Americans today willing to do the courageous thing. More likely most Americans today will say, “I can’t get involved. Ask someone else for help. And please, don’t tell anyone you spoke to me.”

As I wrote last week, it is time to face some hard truths about America’s political future. It is no longer the open and free society it once was. To resist those who rule will involve real personal risk, especially because those taking those risks will be in what appears to be a steadily shrinking minority.

We must each therefore ask this question of ourselves, and answer the question with cold, intellectual honesty: Do I believe in freedom enough to take such risks?

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  • M Puckett

    Anyone who agrees with that statement is evil. They are your enemy. Plan accordingly

  • Cotour

    I think what a poll or study like this clearly demonstrates, however valid it may be, is the wisdom of the Founders.

    What did the Founders understand about human nature?

    AND, the more people are “Educated” the more they believe that THEY are in some way superior to others and see those others as inferior and disposable.

    Now that is some education you got for yourself there.

  • Mike a

    I thought private school was the answer to real enlightenment and less indoctrination?

    Perhaps this suggests that parents of this generation, overall, are terrible.

  • Mike A: I think the introduction of smart phones — and the blind willingness of parents to give them to kids too young to handle them — has more to do with this pattern. The kids grow up locked to a electronic social web that reinforces their own mental framework, and allows them to avoid alternative perspectives. They can’t handle real dissent, no matter how gently offered.

  • Ian C.

    Perhaps it’s the expectation that the coming times are getting worse? Tolerance for deviation shrinks in such circumstances. Consider the news, indoctrination, and situations those young people were/are exposed to in recent years. Climate “emergency,” pandemic hysteria, social/gender/racial justice propaganda, crippling student loans, unaffordable housing prices, now WWIII/nuclear war scare and economic recession. All of that framed in the narratives pushed by the woke media and reinforced on social media. Then many have experienced (witnessed) that cancel culture and a polarizing friend/foe identification indeed works and they concluded that it’s better not to be on the receiving end. “Tough times ahead, deviation means competition over fewer resources and I could lose, we need one binding solution for all, then I’m safe. Those who disagree are a threat.”
    Just speculating, of course.

  • Matt in AZ

    Robert Z: I think it’s also that the younger generations are quite used to answering online polls with zero personal consequences to their answer (as in this example), and immediately move on to the next diversion. Why wouldn’t they just quickly submit most noticeably extreme answer? To many, posturing is far more important than the thoughtful consideration of the real-world implications of such matters. A rather discouraging explanation as well, to be sure.

  • Matt in AZ: It is all of a piece. Smart phones encourage shallow thinking and shallow knowledge, in a herd environment.

  • Mitch S.

    I share the concerns about the left’s indoctrination of the youth but this poll doesn’t smell right.
    Really, the largest segment of every polled demographic supported the death penalty for speech?
    Were there any follow-up questions to see if they understood what was being asked?
    If the poll question was “Violence in response to offensive speech is not a new phenomenon. In some cultures, some types of offensive speech even merit the death penalty. ” would you agree? – of course! – in some cultures that is the case. So maybe these short attention span students stopped listening after the first half. A poorly worded poll question.

    Socialism v Capitalism? Sure, socialism/communism always sound good to students with no/little income that are racking up tuition and other bills. The old saying “If you are young and aren’t a socialist then you don’t have a heart, if you are older and aren’t a capitalist then you don’t have a brain” is a wise one.

    What are we supposed to do, give up on the young generation, stock up on food guns and ammo and hide out in the backwoods?
    We are not only surrendering much of the country to Obama/Biden/Schumer/Pelosi etc but we are dumping the youth of the nation when we should be reaching out and and exposing them to the truth – that liberty, free markets , the constitution are the path to a better society, that socialism/communism ultimately fails. We do believe that right?

  • Cotour

    I think this story in the news might be a good example related to this panel:

    “The founder of FTX was a novice in the currency circle With the collapse of FTX, the founder SBF was also bottomed out. Both of SBF’s parents taught at Stanford Law School. Since childhood, he was deeply influenced by his utilitarian father, who wanted to make the world a better place.”

    Utilitarian: “The doctrine that actions are right if they are useful or for the benefit of a majority.
    the doctrine that an action is right insofar as it promotes happiness, and that the greatest happiness of the greatest number should be the guiding principle of conduct.”

    This is the magical thinking being fostered in the youth of America?

    And Freid stated that he would have donated $1 billion dollars to the Democrat party if Trump runs in 2024. He had already donated $40 million to the Democrats in the midterms. Donation? Or protection money?

    Bernie Madoff tried to get Trump to have him invest for him.

    Trump told Madoff “No thanks, I can lose my own money Bernie”.

  • Empty

    We can give them the death penalty if they are certain they want it. I’d be glad to pitch in.

  • Milt

    What was everyone expecting these students to beleive? For many of these young people, the concept of freedom of speech, as enshrined in our Constitution, is a dangerous anachronism, devoid of context, and it has no relevance to their current concerns. The idea of inalienable rights (or the necessity of protecting them) is no longer a part of their cultural DNA, reflecting as it did the collective experience and accumulated wisdom of Western Civilization. For that matter, the Constitution and the Rule of Law — or why we might want to have these things — are equally irrelevant to them, and they are wholly immersed in the alternate universe of Critical Theory and woke theology. For a nice thumbnail sketch of this phenomenon, see In the words of its author:

    “Critical Theory is a play on semantics. The theory was simple: criticize every pillar of Western culture — family, democracy, common law, freedom of speech, and others. The hope was that these pillars would crumble under the pressure.”

    And, as Robert describes this crumbling:

    “The introduction of critical race theory in almost all levels of society, corporate, education, entertainment, and government, proves that I am not [paranoid]. There are now political agents in all these industries and agencies whose only job is to make sure everyone abides by the racist political agendas of the day, and impose harsh punishments for any dissent.”

    The amazing thing, especially in light of such an abundance of evidence, is that so many conservatives *still* pretend that there is no coordinated attack on our country / culture / civilization by the Marxist Jacobins on the left, and if they continue to ignore this existential threat to our country it will simply go away. “It’s all,” they say, “just traditional partisan politics,” and the left’s unrelenting attack on every institution in our society (including honest and verifiable elections) is not something that we need to talk about with the electorate. Nothing to see here, please move along.

  • Mad Celt

    Very easy to pay lip service to executions for speech until… it comes your time to pay for what you have spoken. Governments so bold as to carry out this punishment all too often dispense with trials. You go to the cell without any certainty of what you said or who you said it to. In some cases it might be your spouse, child or relative. Someone you trusted. These people in the tank for death sentences are living in a bubble right now; an America that still upholds their pamper selves. They’ve never travelled or seen how the ‘other’ lives or the conditions they live in. Sure, its bad to have an American jail door slam behind you. Wait til its Romanian to get the full effect.

  • JG

    It is clear that American students have been dumb down. This is part of it that people do not understand the Constitution as they have not been taught History properly and civics at all.

    My sons are in their mid to late 30s and we had issues with their middle and high schools. The teachers were not teaching properly, the admin did nothing to fix the problems, and the school board was no help. We ended up tutoring our sons through each class to teach them everything they were not learning or were being taught wrong. Both sons decided on Trade School after graduating and are making about 6 figure salaries, have houses, cars, and good bank accounts.

    The schools are not better. My Sister-in-Law homeschooled her two children that are in their twenties. Both are now in college and well ahead counterparts in education.

  • hogmartin

    from Mitch S:
    “If the poll question was ‘Violence in response to offensive speech is not a new phenomenon. In some cultures, some types of offensive speech even merit the death penalty.’ would you agree? – of course! – in some cultures that is the case. So maybe these short attention span students stopped listening after the first half. A poorly worded poll question.”

    I agree; it sounds like the question is asking, “do you agree that this is true about those cultures”. The first 2/3 of the question is unnecessary and misleading. Not that I think it would change the responses that much – but the question is awful. The real question doesn’t need any context; either you agree or you don’t.

  • hogmartin and Mitch S and anyone else who wants to search for the silver lining here: You merely have to glance at my full list of blacklist columns — which unfortunately includes numerous university examples — to see that this poll is likely catching a somewhat accurate picture of the modern student. They are no longer tolerant of dissenting ideas, or if they are, they have no stomach to fight the the goons and bullies.

    Either way, freedom has died in their hearts, and is dying in our culture.

    If we are to stop this death, we have to stop trying to make believe it isn’t happening.

  • Fantum2

    A second question should have been asked: ‘If you offend me enough, can I kill you? ‘
    Maybe there would be a different answer.

  • Cotour



    (Please copy and share)

    And ZERO ($0) dollars and policy to secure our American Southern border. Why do you think that is?

    The Democrat party fully controlled until now government has instituted a bonified illegal invasion of our / your country and if you are a Democrat and voted down the line Democrat, what does that make you?

    (And you are obligated through taxation to pay for it all.)

    President Biden and his head of border security says that the border is “Secure”.

    Mayorkas tells border agents US is ‘going to lose’: leaked audio (

    And Democrat leader of the Senate Charles Schumer says:

    ‘Citizenship for All Undocumented’: Schumer Vows Amnesty For Illegal Aliens (

    From the president on down to the leaders of the Senate and the Congress, all Democrats, what does that make them? IMO traitors to their country in the interests of their political power acquisition and retention.

    Do you blindly support the Democrats and their policies and the American border invasion agenda? I did not think so. But in reality, you have supported this illegal invasion agenda.

    (No rational American is against Legal immigration)

  • John C

    I have always thought that there would come a time where the Left begins to start supporting the Death Penalty. When that day comes, beware!

  • Edward

    Mitch S. wrote: “Socialism v Capitalism? Sure, socialism/communism always sound good to students with no/little income that are racking up tuition and other bills.

    This is a matter of greed on the part of the students rather than their willingness to earn their way through life. Previous generations saw university degrees as something earned, but the generation of the participation trophy seems to demand unearned rewards, including college degrees.

    There once was a time when young couples were wise enough to not marry until they could afford it. These days, kids are willing to remain as wards of their parents rather than leave the nest and make their own way. Somehow, the Hippy generation has changed the country so that children feel entitled, even entitled to prevent others from speaking words and ideas that they do not want to hear. This kind of control is also part of Marxism/socialism/communism.

    Students are not very pro-life, these days. Even Robert Reich, Clinton’s Secretary of Labor and currently a university professor, got some cheers from students when he suggested that their grandparents could be sacrificed* in favor of the students’ own healthcare. This was during the days of the Obamacare debate.

    On the other hand, how many of the students who favor death for offense would be as willing if they knew that the expression of that same opinion was very offensive to so many people? Are they as willing to die for their own opinions as they are willing to have the government kill others in order to protect their own opinions? It is a bit of a difference between modern Americans and colonial Americans.

    As for your suggestion that the smartphone has something to do with our children’s thinking: as someone here on BTB mentioned months ago, everyone staring all day at their smartphones is the machines finally taking over the world.

    In the meantime, after reading such offensive opinions by our current university students, I am going to a safe space where I can get comfort from a fuzzy, purring cat, in the same way that many universities now offer to their triggered students.

    * A century ago, the emphasis was on providing a comfortable retirement as a reward for a lifetime of hard work. These days, kids are much more selfish in their thinking.

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