Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano on Wednesday sought to set a new tone for the department’s efforts to fight terrorism on the home front.
“For too long, we’ve treated the public as a liability to be protected rather than an asset in our nation’s collective security,” Napolitano said in a speech to the Council on Foreign Relations. “This approach, unfortunately, has allowed confusion, anxiety and fear to linger.”
The government, she said, needs to do more to teach citizens how to protect themselves and the nation. “You are the ones who know if something is not right in your communities, such as a suspicious package or unusual activity,” she said.