Patriotism is falling out of favor, as are religion, family values, and hard work.
Millennials are increasingly interested in social justice and equality.
Changing attitudes on the Left and Right have created a chasm between sides.
Left-leaning Millennials show the largest shift in social and ethical standards.
Millennials have very different priorities compared to Boomers – and yes, that’s official.
A major study of social attitudes found that younger adults have dropped many of the values their parents and grandparents held. They also found the change is most dramatic on the Democrat side of the political divide.
The study, carried out by the Wall Street Journal and NBC News, began surveying attitudes 21 years ago. Back then, when Americans were asked what values mattered most in their lives the top answers were working hard, patriotism, religious faith and raising children. Just over two decades later, the picture is very different.
Millennials still value hard work, but their commitment to the other values has fallen sharply. Among over-55s, 80% say patriotism is very important; only 42% of millennials feel the same. Religion and having children fell just as heavily in importance.
It’s also obvious that the gap between Democrats and Republicans is getting wider fast. In fact, Democrats aged over 50 had views that were more like young Republicans than young Dems. To some, this is a hopeful sign that the country’s getting more “progressive”. In reality, it could be a fault line that will tear the Democratic Party apart.
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