America This Week: Astrology’s Generational Gap, Pot Goes Legit, We Didn’t Bank on Supporting Mom and Dad, and Workplace AI Devices Are Watching You

The latest trends in society and culture from The Harris Poll

The House voted for a potential TikTok ban in the U.S. this week. Beyond losing a popular scrolling source, the ban could also lead to a possible information drain. Our America This Week poll, fielded April 19th to 21st among 2,066 Americans, finds (25%) of Americans and (43%) of Gen Z/Millennials report frequently using the app when seeking information on a topic or issue.

This week, we have four new stories: First, a new Harris poll with Cosmo finds astrology less appealing to Gen Z than Millennials. Then, with Politico, we see an easing of social attitudes around marijuana usage. And a new Harris Poll with NerdWallet finds the rising pressure on Americans to support their aging parents financially. Lastly, AI-powered devices in the workplace inspire productivity and paranoia among employees.

Gen Z Is Too Cool For Astrology: Cosmopolitan-Harris Poll

Interest in all things zodiac skyrocketed in the late 2010s. But now, according to the Harris Poll Thought Leadership & Futures’ new survey with Cosmopolitan, the popularity of birth chart memorizing and horoscope screenshot posting may be waning among younger Americans.

  • (83%) of Millennials are “somewhat” or a “total” believer in astrology, compared to (62%) of Gen Z and (69%) of Americans at large.
  • Yet (95%) of those we surveyed knew their zodiac sign, and (65%) said they thought it was an accurate representation of themselves (Millennials: 75% v. Gen Z: 61%).
  • But astrology skepticism is higher among Gen Z: Over half (54%) say, “I judge people who take astrology too seriously” (v. Millennials: 46%).
  • Meanwhile, (81%) of Millennials said they have or would consult the stars for guidance on relationships (v. Gen Z: 59%).
  • Go deeper by subscribing to our Futures Practice leaders Libby Rodney and Abbey Lunney’s The Next Big Think! Substack. Great read on cultural trends!

Takeaway: “Going into this research, because of some of the TikTok trends and other social media trends, we thought Gen Z would lead astrology,” says Harris Poll CSO Libby Rodney. “But you see, millennials are leading in their adoption of it and their beliefs surrounding it, whereas Gen Z is slightly more skeptical. Millennials might be hitting those moments – 30, 35, 40 – when you realize life hasn’t turned out exactly as planned. People turn to outside sources to navigate towards something more meaningful.”

It’s Marijuana’s Moment: Politico-Harris Poll

According to our new poll in Politico, most Americans don’t know marijuana isn’t entirely legal across the United States.

  • Nearly six in ten (59%) are surprised marijuana hasn’t been legalized across the U.S., as (64%) say it no longer carries the stigma it used to have.
  • Also, (40%) of users report being marijuana users (daily: 15%, weekly: 25%), and (62%) of users have traveled to places where recreational marijuana is legal.
  • But still a stigma? Nearly two-thirds (64%) of users are selective about sharing their marijuana usage, and (56%) wouldn’t disclose their usage on the first few dates.
  • Yet half (50%) of all Americans think marijuana will be legalized across the country, with (68%) believing it will be as common as drinking alcohol.

Takeaway: “The numbers speak volumes,” Libby Rodney, Harris Poll CSO. “With 4 in 10 Americans using marijuana, it’s not a trend – it’s a cultural shift. What was once taboo is now mainstream, reflecting changing attitudes and norms. It’s not just about usage; it’s about acceptance,” Rodney said, “signaling a new era in how we perceive and interact with this once controversial substance.”

Budgeting For Aging Parents: NerdWallet-Harris Poll

Saving for retirement can be daunting, especially with inflation. Now, many Americans have to consider not only themselves but their parents’ financial futures in a new Harris survey with NerdWallet.

  • Over one-third of Americans (36%) think their parents will need financial assistance as they age.
  • More than one in five Millennials (22%) currently assist their parents financially, and (41%) plan to do so if their parents need it. Another (37%) say they don’t have the financial means to do so.
  • Are you prepared? (10%) say their parents expect them to help pay for things, and the same number (10%) expect to need their children’s help financially in retirement.

Takeaway: “Having money conversations with your parents can be awkward and uncomfortable,” Elizabeth Ayoola, a NerdWallet personal finance writer, says. “Sometimes cultural norms, shame, and a lack of knowledge hinder people from having these discussions. However, discussing your parents’ finances can help eliminate assumptions and clarify their financial standing and how you might support them in the future.”

AI Assistant or Overlord? Insight Enterprises-Harris Poll

Google’s latest restructuring isn’t the only big tech company readjusting personnel in the age of AI. Our new survey with Insight Enterprises in Fortune shows that they are living out the findings.

  • Staying competitive with AI: Three out of four employees (75%) believe AI-powered devices will help their employer stay competitive.
  • Employees also believe AI-powered devices improve their productivity (73%) and change the critical skills required for their jobs (64%).
  • Meanwhile, nearly half (45%) worry that AI will eventually make what they do less relevant to their employer, especially younger employees (Gen Z: 46%, Millennials: 55% v. Gen X/Boomers: 33%).
  • Privacy and reliance concerns are top of mind: (40%) of employees are concerned about the risks of listening-voice assistants embedded into work devices and becoming too reliant to AI technology to do their jobs (28%).

Takeaway: “The survey results suggest, on balance, employees are optimistic AI-powered devices will help them better leverage AI applications and accelerate productivity,” said Rob Green, the chief digital officer at Insight. “This is a strong signal that we’re heading into the next phase of AI adoption. As people move forward with the understanding that the technology is here to stay and can augment their everyday work, initial curiosity, and concerns have been replaced by a hunger for more knowledge and training from their employers.”

Download the Data

This survey was conducted online within the U.S. by The Harris Poll from April 19th to 21st, among a nationally representative sample of 2,066 U.S. adults.

John Gerzema headshot

John Gerzema


Download the Data

This survey was conducted online within the U.S. by The Harris Poll from April 19th to 21st, among a nationally representative sample of 2,066 U.S. adults.


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