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HOME  > Past issues  > 2024 February 14 - 20  > Interest in socialism growing among world’s youth
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2024 February 14 - 20 TOP3 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Interest in socialism growing among world’s youth

February 16, 2024

Interest in socialism is increasing among the world’s youth as capitalism has been generating many contradictions, including widening social and economic inequality and the climate crisis, throughout the world on an unprecedented scale.

In 2022, a poll was conducted in the U.S., the U.K., Canada, and Australia. The poll asked the question, “Is socialism an ideal economic system?” In the four countries, “Agree” exceeded “Disagree” among respondents aged between 18 and 34.

Several polls surveyed in the U.S. in 2019 showed that expectations for socialism were growing among young people and women in general.

In Japan, too, many delegates in the discussion session during the Japanese Communist Party Congress (Jan.15-Jan.19) said that Japanese young people are becoming more interested in socialism.

Various harmful effects of capitalism originate from its “profit-first principle”. By shifting the ownership of the means of production from private capitalist corporations to society as a whole, the purpose of production will be freed from the “profit-first principle”. People will be free from exploitation and oppression, poverty and inequality, repeated depressions and recessions, and environmental destruction. By drastically cutting working hours, “free and full development of all people” will become possible. This in turn will promote social progress, expand human freedom, and create a virtuous cycle.

A young worker, who had joined the Democratic Youth League of Japan (DYLJ, Min-sei) in Niigata Prefecture out of an interest in socialism, later became a JCP member. The worker said she decided to join the party because she greatly sympathized with a future society in which “the free and full development of all people” will be promoted.

Some people may have the image that socialism would be like the version of socialism implemented in China or the former Soviet Union, and that no freedoms would be guaranteed. Unlike these countries, Japan is a well-developed capitalist country. It has immense potential for social progress. Under well-developed capitalism, advanced production capabilities, mechanisms for socially regulating/controlling the economy, rules to protect people’s livelihoods and fundamental human rights, freedom and democratic statutes, historical experience of people’s struggle, and people’s individuality have been established and developed. These achievements will be carried over to and will further bloom in a future society. A socialist society in Japan will not adopt a “one-party system” and not suppress human rights as in China and the former Soviet Union.

A high school student one day came to a JCP office in Aichi Prefecture and discussed the question “if there is a guarantee that socialism protects democracy” for nearly two hours. This student was freshly astonished at Marx’s vision and finally joined the DYLJ, saying, “Marx thought out the details of a transition to socialism from capitalism? Wow!”
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