Ten years after the Sept. 11 terror attacks, 58 percent of Americans believe people permanently have changed the way they live as a result of the al-Qaida assaults. Substantial minorities of people also acknowledge that they are still reluctant to travel overseas, attend large events, fly on airplanes and go into skyscrapers, USA Today/Gallup polls
An August survey found that, although 58 percent believe people have changed behavior permanently, only 28 percent admit to changing the way they live. A poll taken in July found that 38 percent are less willing to travel overseas, 27 percent attend large events, 24 percent fly on airplanes, and 20 percent go into skyscrapers.
Gallup has posed these questions polls since 9/11. While the passage of time has not much changed how people view the way they live their lives, it has had an effect on behaviors such as travel and flying. Fear of flying has decreased from 43 percent right after 9/11 to 24 percent; go into skyscrapers, 35 to 20 percent; travel overseas, 48 to 38 percent; and attend large events, 30 to 27 percent.
“The 9/11 terror attacks will certainly rank among the most significant events in U.S. history,” Gallup’s analysis says. “Currently, 58 percent of Americans believe the attacks fundamentally altered the way people in this country live their lives, while a smaller 28 percent say they have permanently changed the way they live. In the 10 years since the attacks, however, there has been no decrease in the percentage of Americans who say they have permanently changed the way they live their own lives.
“One thing that has changed in the last 10 years is that Americans are less likely to express reluctance to engage in activities that could make them vulnerable to terrorist attacks, including flying, traveling overseas, and going into skyscrapers. However, substantial minorities of Americans maintain they are less willing to do these things than they were before the attacks occurred, though the extent to which Americans have actually cut back in these areas remains unclear.”
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