It may well be, as recent headlines claimed, that half of Australians support a ban on Muslim immigration, but those wanting a less simplistic view of Australians’ attitudes to terrorism and Islam should take a closer look at the latest ANUpoll.
We set out wanting to establish the limits of Australians’ support for national security policies in the face of diminishing civil liberties.
To this end, we surveyed a randomly, probability-based sample of 1,200 Australians – not people who had signed up to answer survey questions for money – and explored a range of their attitudes.
We found that many adult Australians are anxious about terrorism, and that anxiety leads to support for government policies such as the retention of telecommunications data, and the justification of strict border protection regimes as a counter-terrorism measure.
For instance, 45 per cent of Australians are either ‘very’ or ‘somewhat’ concerned about either themselves or a family member being the victim of a terrorist attack in Australia.
More than half – 56 per cent – think the Government could do more to protect such an attack.
Almost half – 46 per cent – believe the Government’s counter-terrorism policies have not gone far enough to adequately protect the country, compared with 28 per cent who believe they have gone too far in restricting Australians’ civil liberties. [ABC News] Read more