You Needn’t Be Old To Feel Offended

It’s taken for granted that old fogeys get worked up about profanity and sexual display in the media. The corollary assumption is that young adults are unfazed by such things. But that assumption isn’t altogether correct, judging by a Newsweek/Ipsos poll conducted this month. As the chart indicates, nearly one-third of respondents in the 18-29 age cohort are quite put out by on-air profanity. The survey found a similar degree of aversion to nudity on TV (and it’s not so good on the radio, either!): 17 percent said they’re bothered a great deal by televised nudity, and 14 percent said it bothers them quite a bit. As for “sexual situations” on radio and TV, 15 percent of the young adults said it bothers them a great deal and 12 percent said it does so quite a lot. While other polls in recent years have revealed that young adults are more accepting of homosexuality than are their elders, this does not mean the 18-29s care to have it filling the airwaves: 21 percent said homosexuality on radio or television bothers them a great deal; another 10 percent said it bothers them quite a bit. On the other hand, 45 percent said it doesn’t bother them at all—the highest “not at all” score for any item in the survey.