Should Misgendering Be Considered a Crime? Views Among Different Generations

A recent survey conducted by Newsweek has highlighted the contrasting perspectives on the criminalization of “misgendering” in the United States, showcasing a noticeable generational gap between millennials and Generation Z.

Understanding Misgendering: The survey found that 44 percent of millennials (ages 25-34) support the idea of making “misgendering” a criminal offense. “Misgendering” refers to the use of pronouns that do not align with the gender identity of a transgender individual. For example, addressing a woman who identifies as such with “he/him” pronouns would be considered “misgendering.”

Mixed Opinions: On the other hand, 31 percent of millennials reject the idea of criminalizing “misgendering,” while the remaining respondents either have no opinion or are undecided on the matter.

Older Millennials and Generation Z Perspectives: Among older millennials (ages 35-44), there is still a considerable level of support for making “misgendering” a crime, with 38 percent in favor, 35 percent against, and 26 percent expressing no strong opinion.

Generational Divide: In contrast, Generation Z Americans (ages 18-24) show less enthusiasm for the criminalization of “misgendering.” Only 33 percent of Gen Z respondents support such a measure, while 48 percent disagree. The remaining respondents either hold no strong opinion or are unsure. Interestingly, polling data also suggests that Generation Z is increasingly accepting the concept of only two sexes, with 57 percent in agreement in 2023, up from 43 percent in 2021. However, they seem to be more open to using “preferred pronouns” compared to other age groups.

Overall Public Sentiment: When taking into account responses from all age groups, the majority of Americans, marking at 65 percent, oppose the idea of criminalizing “misgendering.” Conversely, 19 percent express support for such legislation, 12 percent remain neutral, and four percent are uncertain.

Survey Methodology: The poll was conducted by Redfield & Wilton Strategies for Newsweek on July 6, involving 1,500 eligible voters throughout the United States. These findings provide valuable insights into the varying perspectives surrounding the contentious issue of “misgendering” and its potential legal consequences.

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