Feeling Terror

Fear of terrorism has made many Americans willing to curtail rights and sacrifice basic freedoms, according to a national survey of 715 respondents prepared by Erik C. Nisbet and James Shanahan of Cornell University for a December 2004 report.

Percent of respondents who think the federal government should:

Have more power to monitor Internet activities: 47

Indefinitely detain suspected terrorists: 63

Outlaw some activities even if constitutionally protected: 36

Percent who say the media should not:

Cover protests: 33

Report criticisms of the government: 31

ATTITUDES TOWARD ISLAM: “Islam promotes violence.”

Percent who agree: 47

Percent of highly religious Christians who agree: 65

“Muslim-Americans should be forced to register their whereabouts.”

Percent who agree: 27

Among highly religious Christians: 42

“Mosques should be closely monitored.”

Percent who agree: 26

Among highly religious Christians: 34

SOURCE: Media & Society Research Group, Cornell University. Analyses involving religion included data only from Christians, agnostics and atheists. Degree of religiosity was based on self-identification, church attendance, and beliefs about Israel and a literal interpretation of the Bible.