China is identified as a threat by the next generation of American leaders while U.S. debt and indebtedness to foreign powers are top national security issues, according to a new survey.
Generation Opportunity, a grassroots organization, released the results on Monday, Nov. 21, from its national poll exploring how America’s young adults view the world, the American economy, and their personal futures.
The Generation Opportunity poll focuses specifically on young Americans ages 18-29, popularly referred to as the “Millennial” generation. The data is particularly relevant in light of President Barack Obama’s recent Asia-Pacific trip, as well as developments related to the Congressional Super Committee.[ Also Read: Can Obama Jobs Plan Reduce Poverty in America? ]
It reveals the opinions of young Americans on issues such as U.S. debt and indebtedness to China, a variety of economic challenges, and domestic concerns.
- Seventy-six percent of young American adults view China as either an economic or a military threat.
- Sixty-two percent believe the top American national security issue is the U.S. debt followed by energy dependency and indebtedness to foreign powers.
- Sixty-nine percent say Washington does not reflect the interests of young Americans.
To reduce these vulnerabilities and manage America’s national security challenges, young Americans believe elected officials in Washington, D.C. need to get the country on more stable economic footing by cutting federal spending rather than raising taxes.[ Also Read: U.S. Small Business Owners Dismiss Hiring Incentives ]
They also believe the U.S. needs to increase the production of domestic energy sources such as oil, natural gas, and coal.
Generation Opportunity commissioned a poll with the polling company, inc./WomanTrend (April 16 – 22, 2011, +/- 4 percent margin of error) and highlights some of the results below.
- 76 percent of Young Americans view China as a danger: 48 percent as an economic threat and 28 percent as both an economic and military threat.
- Top 3 greatest threats to American National Security: National Debt (62 percent), Energy Dependency (61 percent) and Indebtedness to Foreign Powers (50 percent). The threat of terrorism at (39 percent) followed as the fourth major national security concern.
- 56 percent – more than half – indicated their agreement with “American Exceptionalism” – described as an ideal of freedom and democracy exclusive and unique to the United States; only 29 percent disagreed.
- Only 31 percent approve of President Obama’s handling of American youth unemployment.
- When asked on a scale of 1 (meaning not at all) to 5 (meaning a very big concern) how much of a concern America’s current “financial debt”/”deficit” rates, 66 percent of young Americans indicated very big concerns with America’s “financial debt” and 71 percent indicated very big concerns about America’s “deficit.”
- 69 percent say Washington does not reflect the interests of young Americans.
- 54 percent – more than one half – of young Americans are not confident that the U.S. will be a global leader in just 10 years. Only 9 percent said they were “very confident” that the U.S. would be in 10 years.
- 70 percent (net) would increase production of domestic energy sources like oil, natural gas and coal; only 22 percent (net) would decrease production of the same energy sources.
Generation Opportunity is a non-profit, non-partisan 501 (c)(4) organization that seeks to engage everyone from young adults, to early career professionals, college students, young mothers and fathers, construction workers, current service men and women, veterans, entrepreneurs and all Americans who find themselves dissatisfied with the status quo and willing to create a better tomorrow.