Americans believe that benefits from additional security have come at the expense of some privacy and freedom


Americans believe increased security measures implemented by federal, state, and local governments since 9/11 have come with benefits and costs for both security, freedom, and privacy.

I am going to read you several statements. For each statement, please tell me if you agree or disagree with that particular statement:

Click here for full survey results.

Survey Methods

The Reason-Rupe Q3 2011 poll collected a nationally representative sample of 1200 respondents, aged 18 and older from all 50 states and the District of Columbia using live telephone interviews from August 9th-18th 2011. The margin of sampling error for this poll is ± 3 percent. The margin of error for the GOP presidential race numbers is ± 4.79%. Interviews were conducted with respondents using both landline (790) and mobile phones (410). Landline respondents were randomly selected within households based on the adult who had the most recent birthday. Sample was weighted by gender, age, ethnicity, and Census region, based on the most recent US Census data. The sampling frame included landline and mobile phone numbers generated using Random Digit Dialing (RDD) methods and randomly selected numbers from a directory-listed sample. Clickhere for full methodological details. NSON Opinion Strategy conducted the poll's fieldwork. View full methodology.


NEXT: Reason-Rupe Poll: 55 Percent of Americans Say We've Given Up Too Much Freedom and Privacy in the Name of Security Since 9/11

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. What can be done about this at this point? Government loves power and keeping control of the plebs – it won’t give all that up without a fight.

    1. Nothing can be done. The march to tyranny is in double-step, and it’s going to get worse before it gets really really bad.
      And when the shit does finally hit the fan, and we have a Constitutional Convention, positive rights such as health care and minimum living standards will be codified as law.
      At that point the last vestige of liberty will fade away from the planet, never to be seen again.

      And that’s my optimistic view.

      1. That’s the spirit!

      2. Under your optimistic view, we’ll be instituting a system that is completely unsustainable. It will be doomed to collapse and pockets of freedom with arise from the ashes. Then, the whole steady march to tyranny will begin anew. Liberty never fades forever. It’s a cycle.

        1. America worked because it was the place where people came to escape tyranny. For a while it was populated with like minded people who rejected tyranny.

          That is no longer the case. We have tyrants in government and it seems half the population is licking their boots.

          Those who love liberty are in a distinct minority.

          Soon we will fade away and humanity will return to the default state that it has been in for all of history: poverty and tyrants.

          1. mmmmmmmm… boooooots…

            1. Fuck you, spoofer.

              Mmmmmm… boooooots…

              1. Bad spoofing. Everyone knows I’m into ball gags and stilleto heels.

                1. And luscious chocolatey Obama cock.

          2. We have tyrants in government and it seems half the population is licking their boots.

            Amen Brother.

      3. I don’t want to beleive this, but deep down I think you are right.

    2. What can be done about this at this point? Land LORDs loves power and keeping control of the plebs – they won’t give all that up without a fight.

      1. Yeah what pee pee said!

        1. There once was a man named Pee Pee,
          Who dreamed of life in a Teepee,
          But his vision was flawed,
          Like some ancient Greek god,
          So his posts all came off as just creepy.

    3. Government loves power and keeping control of the plebs – it won’t give all that up without a fight.

      Now, now Restoras….they are, after all, your Federal Family! How dare you say things like that about family!

    4. Plebes love government power and keeping control of the other plebes – they won’t give all that up without a fight.


      1. Some plebes, that’s cetain. Unfortunately, I think too many people beleive that living in a constitutional republic with legally protected freedoms is the norm, and not the rarity that it actually is.

        Complacency will be our doom.

        1. “too many people beleive that living in a constitutional republic with legally protected freedoms is the norm..”

          Absolutely, precisely correct. Like spoiled rich kids, wasting their inheritance.

  2. I think I have detected a theme for the day.

    1. Shut up, rectal, and if you’re not rectal, shut up anyway, bitch puddin’!

      1. No, you shut up. INFINITY!

  3. Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.

    1. “Those who would trade a little freedom for a little security deserve neither and shall soon be robbed of both.”

      I like my version better.

  4. 81% of people are pitiful, it seems.

    1. Would you like to live in a Non-State sociopolitical typology?

      Or do you love civilization (the City-State?)

      1. As government less as possible: Si

        In a mud hut with you: No

    2. Where would you rather live, here or Gaza?

  5. Killing off a Non-State sociopolitical typology for the “security” of civilization is the first step.

    “No European who has tasted Savage life can afterwards bear to live in our societies.” ~Benjamin Franklin

    “The life of an Indian is a continual holiday.” ~Thomas Paine

    1. “The life of an Indian is a continual holiday.” ~Thomas Paine

      If by “holiday” you mean “high risk of death by disease, starvation or violence.”

    2. I’m crazy…and so am I!

  6. “we have less privacy”…damn[INTERWEBZ] !

  7. The second article of the English faith followed from their fundamental belief in the superiority of civilization…

    From the moment the Indians surrendered their English prisoners, the colonists faced a series of difficult problems. The first was the problem of getting the prisoners to remain with the English…

    The great majority of white Indians left no explanations for their
    choice. Forgetting their original language and their past, they simply
    disappeared into their adopted society. But those captives who returned to write narratives of their experiences left several clues to the motives of those who chose to stay behind. They stayed because they found Indian life to possess a strong sense of community, abundant love, and uncommon integrity-values that the English colonists also honored, if less successfully. But Indian life was attractive for other values-for social equality, mobility, adventure, and, as two adult converts acknowledged, “the most perfect freedom, the ease of living, [and] the absence of those cares and corroding solicitudes which so often prevail with us.”

    The White Indians of Colonial America
    Author(s): James Axtell
    Source: The William and Mary Quarterly, Third Series, Vol. 32, No. 1 (Jan., 1975), pp. 55-88
    Published by: Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture

    1. They stayed for the gay sex.

    2. Forgot to post some easy links for those interested. I know some are – a few propertarian skeptics have been posting in my absence.…..ndians.pdf…..ic.www/web 200/white indians.pdf

      This is also in…

      The Invasion Within:
      The Contest of Cultures in Colonial North America
      by James Axtell, William R. Kenen, Jr., Professor of Humanities, College of William and Mary
      Oxford University Press

      1. Gonna be a good day Tater!

    3. But Indian life was attractive for other values-for social equality, mobility, adventure…

      Social equality: Everyone lived in a hut and slept on the ground and went hungry if they didn’t catch enough game.

      Mobility: You kept moving around to find better hunting grounds or when neighboring warlike tribes with better weapons and warriors ran you off. Luckily you had so little stuff you could easily drag it with you.

      Adventure: You were never quite sure when some neighboring tribe would raid your village and capture your women, and you could then plan to have adventures trying to capture them back.

  8. Polls and Trolls. Off to go blind myself with some salvaged laser diodes.

  9. On a somewhat related note – I looked back a few days and didn’t see this posted, so I’ll toss it up here, just in case it wasn’t.

    Excellent decision from the First Circuit:

    [I]s there a constitutionally protected right to
    videotape police carrying out their duties in public? Basic First
    Amendment principles, along with case law from this and other
    circuits, answer that question unambiguously in the affirmative.

    Here is the opinion, in PDF.

    1. So what? You can beat the rap, but you can’t beat the ride.

  10. “We have given up too much freedom and privacy in the name of security.”

    “Today’s security measures may be inconvenient, but they are generally worth it.”

    Those two statements are mutually exclusive. If you believe we have given up “too much freedom and privacy” then you must concede that the security we gained is not “worth it”.

    Yet, at least 26% of participants agreed with both those statements. Clearly, at least 26% of people are idiots who don’t really know what they believe.

    1. Thanks. I was just about to point out the hardcore cognitive dissonance at work.

      1. Is it just me, or does damn near every opinion poll these days reveal massive cognitive dissonance within public opinion? Like all the folks who say they want to cut government spending, but don’t want to cut anything once specific programs are mentioned.

        1. Sadly, it’s not just you. Frank “Fuck you Frank!” Luntz knows all about it.

    2. Beat me to it, some guy. Right down to the word “idiots”.

    3. So now we have hard proof that at least 26% of people are idiots, but that doesn’t tell us the actual number. Anecdotally, I think the actual is more like 65 or 70%

    4. …..sigh….. and these people call me a idealouge because I avoid contradictions.

  11. It’s for your own good, you fucking ingrates.

    1. I’m Barack Obama, and I approve of this message.

  12. The Suderman treatment it is! That is an F on alt text.

  13. Here you can choose more new products, enjoy more discounts, so you get favorite products while saving money.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.