Red, Yellow, or No Shirt: Where do University Students of Thailand Stand?
Amidst the immense hardship to achieve a consensus on the definition of democracy, having allowed political rivalries of Thailand in the past decade to proclaim themselves as democratic, albeit with different emphases, the participation of personnel and students of various universities in such conflicts has led to branding of their respective institutes with a stigma of political biases towards certain factions. In view of that, this research was purposed to study and compare political attitudes of students in a university, which has provided support, participated, and contributed to the “Bangkok Shutdown” incident by blocking 1 of 7 strategic points, by individual factors of field of study, birthplace, parental occupation, and parental income. Data were collected from 400 undergraduates enrolled in the first semester of academic year 2016 through a questionnaire, and analysed through statistics of frequency, percentage, mean, standard deviation, one-way ANOVA, Tukey's pairwise comparison, and Pearson's correlation coefficient at significance level of 0.05. The findings revealed that, despite the university being branded as a part of Yellow Shirt faction, the students showed weak inclinations towards Red Shirt faction. Only those from Humanities-Social Sciences seemed to have yellow shirt attitudes. Birthplace and parental occupation did not affect political attitudes of the students in this university, while students whose parents had the highest and lowest incomes tended to take Yellow Shirt standpoints, and those whose parents had moderate incomes leaned towards Red Shirt attitudes.