The Boston Marathon attacks reignited the debate about the balance between civil liberties and security. According to a CNN/TIME poll, 63% of Americans fear terrorists will always find a way to launch a major attack, no matter what the government does. Michael Crowley, Time magazine’s deputy Washington bureau chief and co-author of this week’s cover story, “Homeland Insecurity, Do We Need To Sacrifice Privacy To Be Safer?” believes it is the new normal. “I think it is surprising this new normal didn’t arrive sooner than it did,” Michael Crowley said. “And I think we are likely to see more of it.”
According to the CNN/TIME poll, 61% of Americans say a bigger concern for them is that the government will enact policies that restrict their civil liberties. Crowley says, “Hypothetically you could have the kind of society where everyone getting on an airplane is strip searched. Or if you want to stand at the Boston Marathon finish line you go through metal detectors and you’re patted down. We’re not going to reach that point. Even if we did, I don’t think we would have totally zero risk. But I think as Americans we understand that.”
Americans should follow the “if you see something say something” rule, Crowley said. Or “maybe in this case it’s if you hear something say something.”
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Homeland insecurity: What is our new normal?