Justin Murphy is a political scientist who’s a lecturer in “governance and policy” at the University of Southampton. On his website he writes about politics and social phenomena from a left-wing viewpoint. His latest post, “Who’s afraid of free speech in the United States?” has some surprises for those of us—including me—who feel that the Left is especially censorious compared to the Right. His data, compiled from the U.S. General Social Survey, shows that that’s not quite right.
Murphy analyzed data reported over 45 years on American’s on political self-identification as well as willingness to censor those espousing a given view. Here are the questions people were asked about censorship:
For most of its surveys between 1972 and 2016, the General Social Survey asked a U.S. sample to consider the following types of potential public speakers. (They asked about a few others but the following are the…
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