'People deserve to be cancelled' - Is Gen Z less tolerant?

One quarter of people aged 13 to 24 have very little tolerance for people with beliefs they disagree with
Jack Quann
Jack Quann

16.15 3 Nov 2022

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'People deserve to be cancelle...

'People deserve to be cancelled' - Is Gen Z less tolerant?

Jack Quann
Jack Quann

16.15 3 Nov 2022

Share this article

Ireland is more tolerant of different beliefs than Britain, according to one listener.

She was responding to a new survey in the UK, which found one quarter of Gen Z - people aged 13 to 24 - say they "have very little tolerance for people with beliefs that they disagree with".

They do not believe in unrestrained free speech, with nearly half agreeing that "some people deserve to be cancelled".


The research from Channel 4 included more than 1,500 people.

Newstalk reporter Henry McKean took to the streets for Moncrieff to see if young Irish people feel the same.

One young woman said: "I do think people deserve to be cancelled.

"I feel like we have less tolerance for things that, maybe, would have been forgiven in the past.

"We may be look at people and think: 'They have more bad that outweighs the good of them as a person,' and then we would consider them cancelled.

"I think, even if someone has made contributions to academic stuff, that can be acknowledged, but I think you should always separate the art from the artists.

"Kanye West [has] made great contributions to music, but I don't think that that merits him being exempt from criticism.

"I do think he should be cancelled."

'Different levels of cancelling'

A young man told Henry: "I definitely know people who look for anything in a conversation to just cancel someone about - for being politically incorrect or not having the appropriate views or having an out of date view."

While another young woman said: "I do see what other generations are saying about cancel culture and I think people who are very chronically on the internet can be a bit crazy about it.

"I also don't really see a problem with if someone like Kanye West - you mentioned as being antisemitic - I just don't think he should deserve a privileged position in society if he's that much of an antisemite."

Asked about JK Rowling's views on transgender people, and if she should be cancelled, another woman said: "I think that's the author - I don't think it should have any impact on how we view the quality of the Harry Potter books.

"I think there's different levels of cancelling.

"I did my undergrad in England, and I think Ireland is more tolerant of different beliefs from what I've seen than Britain".

Another woman suggested: "I don't agree with what she was saying, but I still love the Harry Potter books."

Asked what issues matter to her, she said climate change, LGBTQ issues and femisism.

"It's the same issues that other generations have been experiencing, but we're just doing it in different ways or developing it," she added.

'Significantly more progressive'

The Gen Z study found gender equality, climate change and human rights are seen as shared values - in other words, the collective responsibility of society, not the failings of older generations.

However, Gen Z are significantly more progressive than their parents and even millennials on some issues.

Only 48% of Gen Z believe there are just two genders, compared to 68% of over-25s.

They are also more supportive of multiculturalism than older cohorts.

Three out of five 13-24s see their parents as role models, a quarter point to a grandparent and about the same proportion identify a teacher.

Listen back to Henry's full report below:

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Cancel Culture Channel 4 Gen Z Gen Z Study Henry McKean JK Rowling Kanye West Moncrieff Politically Incorrect Tolerance

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