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Anger Versus Fear: Perceptions of Terrorism Among the American Public

Sury, Jonathan; Schlegelmilch, Jeffrey; Redlener, Irwin E.

With recent terrorist attacks in Brussels, Belgium; Paris, France; San Bernardino, California and elsewhere, the rhetoric for addressing the issue of terrorism has grown more polarized. In particular we have seen increasingly aggressive statements demanding limits to immigration, increasing vigilance against Muslim communities, and calling for more direct military action against terrorist organizations.The tone of these statements has prompted an important question as to the underlying reason for the desire for more aggressive policing and military tactics. It has also raised critical questions regarding surveillance and data privacy rights via encryption backdoors on every day technologies. Is this desire for action driven more by a sense of fear and anxiety? Or is this driven by anger and humiliation?The answer to these questions may help understand which groups of individuals are likely to support or reject various approaches to combatting terrorism, as well as their perceptions of the kind of leadership needed.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
National Center for Disaster Preparedness
Published Here
March 24, 2016
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