Why Are Young Americans Embracing Socialism? | The Daily Show


It’s safe to say that socialism is having a moment
in American politics right now. And that’s freaking
a lot of people out. So we sent
our newest correspondent, Jaboukie Young-White,
to find out why. YOUNG-WHITE: For years,
grumpy old white dudes have been telling us that
socialism is total bullshit. Socialism leads
to decline and ruin. This system crushes human souls. But as The Daily Show’s
new Senior Youth Correspondent, -(cheering) -I know
that millennials right now think socialism is
totally on trend. I popped some Molly
and hit the street to find out why,
even though the olds hate it, the kids love socialism. Uh, I think socialism is great. I think you should
definitely help whoever you could
in any situation. I (bleep) socialism
just because (bleep) anything -that’s helping
black people out. -Okay. So you’re socialism curious. -Yeah, well, I’m in college.
-Right. Do you hate billionaires? Low-key? Yeah. You look at Jeff Bezos,
he doesn’t look human. I mean, I think the idea
of socialism is… on point. I mean, I don’t really know
what socialism means to be completely honest
with you. YOUNG-WHITE: Oh, it’s okay.
We’re all confused. If there were only someone
we could talk to, someone with some deep
experience on the subject. When I started doing this sort
of piece on socialism, I knew that there was really
only one politician who I could talk to about it. So, yes, my question is,
do you know AOC? -Sure. -And, um,
what’s her availability? Like, if you could put us
in touch maybe. Like, y-you–
you want to speak to her? -Yeah, maybe– I just figured,
you know. -(laughs) YOUNG-WHITE: Seriously, you
can’t talk socialism in America without going to the OG,
Senator Bernie Sanders. I believe in a society
where all people do well, and not just a handful
of billionaires. YOUNG-WHITE: Could he be the
oldest millennial in America? You know that capitalism
has given us a bunch of really dope things,
right? iPhones, cars, hamburgers, the Avengers movies,
the opioid crisis. So why are young people like
myself very open to socialism? Your generation,
the younger generation, will in all likelihood, have a lower standard of living
than your parents. Your generation is leaving
school more deeply in debt, having a much harder time
finding affordable housing. The jobs that you get
will pay less. So the idea
of creating a society with more egalitarianism I think is very appealing
to young people. Okay. Shh, shh, shh, shh, shh. Yeah, yeah. I feel the Bern. I see what you’re talking
about now. WHITE-YOUNG: I admit it,
Democratic Socialism looks pretty fine
on his Tinder profile, but are we gonna vibe
when we meet IRL? If you go to countries
like Denmark or Sweden, you’re gonna see
very little poverty. You could leave your job,
you could start a new business. You and your family still have
health care as a right. So I could quit The Daily Show
and be fine? Absolutely. -Well, it was great meeting
with you. -(laughs) All right, that’s a wrap. So under President Bernie,
we’d be more European like Denmark or Narnia. But try telling that
to the haters. It’s a terrible system,
it’s never worked. And in order for it
to work at all, you got to kill several million
people to make it work. YOUNG-WHITE:
Karol Markowicz has written on why socialism needs
to be canceled forever, period. Millennials have been raised
in such prosperous times they just think that,
“Oh, we can make it even better with this insane plan
to share the resources.” You know, I would love
capitalism, if it just weren’t
for all the sick people and all the poor people
who can’t afford health care. Is there a way for me to enjoy
capitalism without those things? If the solution is socialism, it’s gonna make us all equal
in our poverty. But if everyone is poor,
isn’t that kind of cool ’cause we’re all experiencing
the same thing? So it’ll be like,
“Hey, like, the bread line
was extra long today.” And I’d be like,
“Oh, my God, yeah, it was. That guy is super observant
and, like, funny.” Not so much. No. I was born in the Soviet Union. My great-grandfather
was killed in a gulag because he owned a business, and socialists decided
that was no longer legal. WHITE-YOUNG:
That’s truly horrific. Would Bernie be sending
small-business owners to forced labor camps? Obviously, Soviet Union was an authoritarian society with no democratic rights,
and I think if you know history, you’ll know that
democratic socialists stood up and fought against that. You can look about what existed
in the Soviet Union or in Venezuela… that is not what I’m talking
about at all. So no one’s going to the gulag? Well, except– No. -Uh, okay.
-(laughs) WHITE-YOUNG: Fact check: the
examples of failed socialism that critics use are not
socialist democracies, but authoritarian states
led by corrupt, ruthless,
and paranoid dictators. But I do have one real problem
with socialism. I like money. You know, TV’s going kind
of good for me right now, and I’m thinking of writing
a successful book. Is socialism still for me if
I’m a millennial millionaire? I mean, it depends on
what’s your heart. If what you say in your life is, “All I want to do is make as
much money as I possibly can and screw everything else,
I don’t give a damn.” Yeah, no, I don’t think
democratic socialism is your cup of tea, but if you
have a decent heart, and you say, “Look,
I’m doing really well. “But you know what? I also want
to be a contributor “to the well-being of society, so I’m gonna pay my fair share
of taxes.” YOUNG-WHITE: Wow.
I could have my CBD-infused, gluten-free cake
and eat it, too. I’m liking the socialism thing
more and more. And Bernie made me feel
so good, I decided to share something. -I brought you a present.
-That’s cool. -So… So…
-All right. Anticipating. Oh, oh. That’s beautiful. Yeah, thank you.
I made it myself. When you are elected president, where do you think you’re gonna
put this in the White House? I’ll put it up some place. I-I don’t know the exact room. But it’s beautiful
and I thank you for it. YOUNG-WHITE:
You’re welcome, Bernie. Enjoy. Jaboukie Young-White, everyone.

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