Maintaining Safety and Security

Topics: United States Department of Homeland Security, Emergency management, United States Pages: 7 (2238 words) Published: August 7, 2013
Maintaining Safety and Security

Daniel Brown
Maintaining Safety and Security; the Department of Homeland Security Kaplan University

“I think computer viruses should count as life. I think it says something about human nature that the only form of life we have created so far is purely destructive. We've created life in our own image.” Stephen Hawking

Maintaining Safety and Security; the Department of Homeland Security While there are many important agencies responsible for the safety and security of the American people, none are burdened so heavily with the expectation of excellence as the Department of Homeland Security. The Department of Homeland Security was founded in 2003 in the wake of the September 11th, 2001 attacks in Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., and New York City. This newly created agency became responsible for identifying and protecting Americans from terrorism, while maintaining national security. The DHS is the third largest agency, with 240,000 employees and 22 agencies merged into one. The DHS has often been criticized by civilian and government authorities for being too strict or failing to meet standards on all levels, but since September 11th, 2001 there has been no large scale successful attack upon American soil. The DHS continues to work to safeguard American interests and lives while maintaining a level of professionalism that serves the public. The Importance of the Department of Homeland Security

The Department of Homeland Security is the newest of all the agencies within the United States government and is often viewed as being an over-stretched arm, of an overbearing government. Many in the US feel that the DHS has been given too much authority, and infringes on the personal protections and freedoms of every American citizen. While every American is entitled to their opinion, this examination will show the DHS is not only an important agency designed to protect the American people against terrorism and aid during natural disasters; they assist in the war against terrorism. Without the agency, many Americans would be put at risk. Domestic attacks on infrastructure, and civilian essential requirements such as food production and water supply, even cyber terrorism, could cripple our way of life in the United States. The DHS and its’ sub agencies are a commitment of the government to safeguard the lives and prosperity of the American people, and should be hailed as vigilant watchdog against danger, both foreign and domestic. The vision of The DHS, “to ensure a homeland that is safe, secure, and resilient against terrorism and other hazards” (Department of Homeland Security, 2003) is but a humble acceptance to the arduous duty that is protecting this nation from its’ enemies. The Brief History of the DHS Produces Results

“Eleven days after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge was appointed as the first Director of the Office of Homeland Security in the White House. The office oversaw and coordinated a comprehensive national strategy to safeguard the country against terrorism and respond to any future attacks.” Terrorist tactics continue to evolve, and we must keep pace. Terrorists seek sophisticated means of attack, including chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosive weapons, and cyber-attacks. Threats may come from abroad or be homegrown. (DHS, 2009) We must be vigilant against new types of terrorist recruitment as well, by engaging communities at risk being targeted by terrorist recruiters. With the passage of the Homeland Security Act by Congress in November 2002, the Department of Homeland Security formally came into being as a stand-alone, Cabinet-level department to further coordinate and unify national homeland security efforts, opening its doors on March 1, 2003.The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is a direct outgrowth of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, which highlighted America's vulnerability to...

References: Department of Homeland Security. (2003, April). Our mission. Retrieved from http://www.dhs.gov/our-mission
Hawking, S. H. (2010). Retrieved from http://www.hawking.org.uk/life-in-the-universe.html
* Royston Greenwood and C. R. Hinings, 1996 the Academy of Management Review pp. 1022-1054
* http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/PLAW-107publ296/pdf/PLAW-107publ296.pdf
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