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Homeland Security - Essay Example

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The very notion of Homeland Security is troubling; it is troubling because the concepts and the focus seem so vague and undefined. What, for instance, is meant by "Homeland" Is it an exclusive reference to a country, a state, or the sanctity of an individual's personal home Is there a priority placed upon one aspect of the homeland definition, such as a priority for a country's more general security at the expense of an individual's security These questions are not answered; similarly, one is left to wonder what is meant precisely by the reference to the term "Security." One might very well infer a definition of security which emphasizes security against terrorism by outsiders, against te…
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Homeland Security

Download file to see previous pages... This essay, this reaction paper, will argue that these terms need to be defined very specifically and very deliberately; otherwise, it persists as a vague concept capable of being used as justification for nearly any action. More specifically, this paper will argue that homeland ought to be defined to include a variety of harmonious interests and that security ought to be defined as actions and policies designed to accomplish their objectives with the least amount of intrusion into the affairs of individual states and into the lives of individuals or businesses.
As an initial matter, homeland should include a variety of interests; more particularly, it should refer to the nation, the states, and to individuals. There should be no ranking of these homeland types in terms of significance; that means that national interests should not be placed above state interests through this extra-constitutional concept, and that individuals should not be granted a higher status than they are already accorded under traditional notions of constitutional jurisprudence. A framework for allocating powers and rights already exists in the constitution; the mere notion of a recently defined homeland being promulgated in haphazard fashion and zealously guarded sounds forebodingly like an attempt to subvert constitutional principles through non-constitutional means. A great deal has been made about protecting critical homeland sites, such as those related to infrastructure, finance, and military readiness. The homeland also includes lesser constituent parts of the country, such as in Louisiana, which were devastated by the hurricanes recently. There ought to be a uniform approach to defining the homeland, whether is the Pentagon, the Federal Reserve Bank, Louisiana, or Mr. and Mrs. Smith's family farm. My sense, my reaction, is that the homeland portion of the concept prioritizes national aspects while minimizing or ignoring state and individual aspects. This would be a dangerous deviation from the constitutional principles upon which this country was founded; as a result, that would make Homeland Security a direct threat to the system of governance established by the American constitution.
In addition, the security aspect of the concept is also vague and seemingly unlimited. Is security meant to be proactive or reactive Is it meant to stifle otherwise protected types of speech and protests in order to prevent some potential negative outcome The Central Intelligence Agency and the American military have traditionally been vested with duties dealing with international affairs. The CIA is no more allowed to spy on American soil than are American soldiers allowed to engage in domestic law enforcement activities. And, yet, as security implies both the gathering of intelligence and the mobilization of physical forces to deter any potential attack, whom else would be involved in maintaining American security if not these organizations This raises troubling issues. Does this notion of security mean ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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Homeland security
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