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First Amendment Support Climbing Among High School Students

Support among American high school students for the First Amendment is stronger today than it has been in the last 12 years, according to the latest in a series of large nationwide surveys of the nation’s rising voters.

Some 91 percent of high school students say they believe that individuals should be allowed to express unpopular opinions, according to a Knight Foundation survey of nearly 12,000 students conducted last year. The survey is the sixth in a series, the first of which was carried out in 2004, when 83 percent supported such rights.

“What we’ve seen since 2004 is a slow but steady increase in support,” said Kenneth Dautrich, the study’s lead author and the president of the Stats Group, a statistical and data services firm.