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Poll: Most Young People Say Anti-Semitism Isn’t Increasing

Most young Americans believe that Muslims, black people and transgender people are facing increasing discrimination, but that anti-Semitism isn’t on the rise — with some saying they believe it has decreased.

This new data about young Americans, ages 15 to 24, and their perceptions of discrimination comes from a survey carried out by the Public Religion Research Institute in collaboration with MTV, released earlier this month.

Only 17 percent of young people believe that Jews have faced increasing discrimination over the last year. Almost 70 percent say the level of anti-Semitism in the U.S. has stayed about the same and 13 percent say it has decreased.

These perceptions may strike some as surprising, considering data released by the Anti-Defamation League in November that showed what they called a “surge” in the number of anti-Semitic incidents between 2016 and 2017. The ADL reported almost 1,300 incidents that they categorized as anti-Semitic, a 67 percent increase from the year before.

Meanwhile, 75 percent of young people believe that discrimination against Muslims is on the rise, according to the PRRI/MTV survey. Almost 50 percent say black people are facing increasing discrimination. One in four of the young people polled report having been targeted or treated unfairly themselves in the last 12 months because of their race or ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity, immigration status, or religious beliefs.

Email Sam Kestenbaum at and follow him on Twitter at @skestenbaum




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