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War, Civil Liberties, and Security Opinion Poll

Ten years after the attacks of September 11, 2001, an organization of journalists and academics conducted a public opinion survey about civil liberties and security. The poll asked Americans if they favored or opposed a variety of policies designed to respond to the threat of terrorism against the United States. A selection of survey questions is provided, along with the poll responses collected during the summer of 2011.

Questions 

Should the U.S. government be allowed to take the following actions without a search warrant issued by a judge? 

1. Monitor searches on the Internet, including those by U.S. citizens, to watch for suspicious activities 

YES NO 

2. Install surveillance cameras in public places to watch for suspicious activity 

YES NO 

3. Monitor public library records, including those of U .S. citizens, to watch for suspicious activity 

YES NO 

4. Use racial and ethnic profiling to decide who should get tougher security screening at airports 

YES NO 

5. Require all people in the United States, including citizens, to carry a national ID card and produce it to authorities upon demand 

YES NO 

6. Arrest and detain suspected terrorists who are U.S. citizens for extended periods without being formally charged in a court of law 

YES NO 

 

Responses 

1. Monitor searches on the Internet, including those by U.S. citizens, to watch for suspicious activities 

48% Favor 37% Oppose 14% Don’t Know 

2. Install surveillance cameras in public places to watch for suspicious activity 

71% Favor 20% Oppose 9% Don’t Know 

3. Monitor public library records, including those of U .S. citizens, to watch for suspicious activity 

40% Favor 41% Oppose 19% Don’t Know 

4. Use racial and ethnic profiling to decide who should get tougher security screening at airports 

35% Favor 53% Oppose 11% Don’t Know 

5. Require all people in the United States, including citizens, to carry a national ID card and produce it to authorities upon demand 

47% Favor 42% Oppose 10% Don’t Know 

6. Arrest and detain suspected terrorists who are U.S. citizens for extended periods without being formally charged in a court of law 

34% Favor 51% Oppose 14% Don’t Know

Source | Adapted by American Social History Project from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research at the University of Chicago, http://www.apnorc.org/
Creator | The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research
Item Type | Quantitative Data
Cite This document | The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research , “War, Civil Liberties, and Security Opinion Poll,” SHEC: Resources for Teachers, accessed April 19, 2021, https://shec.ashp.cuny.edu/items/show/1907.

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