Will COVID-19 Radicalize Young People Forever? Don't Count On ItBreaking News
tags: political history, Protest
Now, some are predicting that COVID-19 will be the latest outside force to radically shift young voters to the left. The Washington Post recently noted that “as the pandemic and its economic havoc exacerbate disparities, some Gen Zers see grim validation of their support for the government-run programs and social-welfare policies less popular with their parents and grandparents.”
This article quotes several young, left-leaning activists, including one dubbed “America’s Greta Thunberg,” who “have been using some of their time in self-quarantine to organize protests and grow the movements behind their own causes. They have incorporated the pandemic into their messaging about health care, climate change and income inequality.”
By now, the logic has become a cliché. Voters decide elections, and if young voters become uniformly liberal, then every future election will resemble a “progressive youthquake.”
Experts in the media who opine on the next generation hold these truths to be self-evident: that patriotism and individualism are out, while democratic socialism and paper straws are in.
But these grand pronouncements are premature, to say the least. Generational stereotypes by definition brush a lot under the rug, and prophecies of woke younger generations are no exception. While pundits gaze into crystal balls, plenty of younger conservatives are also hard at work building a wholly different future. We’ve stepped up our engagement in many ways, even if our actions lie below the surface of daily politics and simplistic efforts to describe the largest generation in U.S. history.
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