A majority of Sacramento region residents worry government policies to combat
terrorist activities excessively restrict civil liberties, according to a survey
released today by Sacramento State.
Fifty-six percent of residents surveyed are concerned that new anti-terrorism
laws will erode civil liberties, with views strongly skewed along party lines—72
percent of Democrats saying they are worried compared to 34 percent of Republicans,
who are more concerned the United States will not enact strong anti-terrorism
And while most of the region’s residents are opposed to government monitoring
of the e-mails and phone calls of American citizens, the number in favor is
creeping upward. Thirty percent now say they are willing to allow monitoring,
up from 23 percent in 2002. They are also more willing to support surveillance
of non-U.S. citizens (52 percent) than American citizens (30 percent).
Those are just some of the findings of a recent survey about civil liberties
in the “2006 Sacramento State Annual Survey of the Region,” conducted
Feb. 4 to March 5 by sociology professor Amy Liu and more than 30 students through
the University’s Institute for Social Research. The survey covers El Dorado,
Placer, Sacramento and Yolo counties.
Among the other findings:
Those under 40, those with household incomes less than $75,000 and men are
more worried about anti-terrorism laws eroding civil liberties than those
65 or older, those with incomes of more than $75,000 and women.
Republicans are becoming more accepting of, and Democrats more opposed to,
government monitoring of both U.S. and non-U.S. citizens.
survey included 1,122 randomly selected adults in the Sacramento Region who
were interviewed in English and Spanish. It has a margin of error of 3 percent.