Chapman University recently completed its third annual Chapman University Survey of American Fears (2016). The survey asked respondents about 65 fears across a broad range of categories including fears about the government, crime, the environment, the future, technology, health, natural disasters, as well as fears of public speaking, spiders, heights, ghosts and many other personal anxieties.
In addition to the set of fears examined in previous waves, the survey team took a closer look at two fear related phenomena: Americans’ beliefs in conspiracy theories and fear of Muslims, sometimes referred to as “Islamophobia.”
In its third year, the annual Chapman University Survey of American Fears included more than 1,500 adult participants from across the nation and all walks of life. The 2016 survey data is organized into five basic categories: personal fears, conspiracy theories, terrorism, natural disasters, paranormal fears, and fear of Muslims.
The 2016 survey shows that the top 10 things Americans fear the most are:
- Corruption of government officials (same top fear as 2015)
- Terrorist attacks
- Not having enough money for the future
- Being a victim of terror
- Government restrictions on firearms and ammunition (new)
- People I love dying
- Economic or financial collapse
- Identity theft
- People I love becoming seriously ill
- The Affordable Health Care Act/”Obamacare“