NEW YORK — Fewer Americans fear their families could become victims of a terror attack, according to a new poll.
Thirty percent of those surveyed in a poll conducted by the AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research are a “great deal” or “somewhat” concerned that they or their loved ones could be harmed by terrorists. That’s the lowest level in polling on the subject dating back to 2004.
Jim Shelley, an independent filmmaker from Easton, Conn., who was shooting near ground zero, said he is less fearful, but still wary.
“I’m afraid for my family, but less so now than in the immediate aftermath because people are more watchful,” said Shelley. “The fact that we’ve had so little in the way of terrorism means that some people are working very hard. They were kind of snoozing before, so I think we’re safer.”
Martin Snow, owner of the Trinity Boxing Club a block from the Trade Center site, said he isn’t afraid at all.
“We turn the tables on them,” said Snow, his head wrapped in an orange bandanna. “We scare the terrorists, that’s how we New Yorkers operate. … We’ve got swagger.”
Nick Chiarchiaro, whose wife, Dorothy, was killed in the Sept. 11 World Trade Center attack, said he believes the numbers will go up if the United States strikes Syria. The Vernon, N.J. resident said: “Terrorists have lots of patience. I’m 71, but I do think about my children and grandchildren. … We should learn to mind our own business.”
In other findings, the poll says 28 percent of Americans believe the U.S. war against terrorism has been extremely or very effective. Half said it has been somewhat effective and one-fifth called it ineffective.
Nearly all, 94 percent, say the war on terrorism has not yet been won, and of those, 14 percent think it’s unlikely victory can come in the next 10 years.
The AP-NORC Center survey was conducted Aug. 12-29 by NORC at the University of Chicago. It involved landline and cellphone interviews in English or Spanish with 1,008 adults nationwide. Results have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.