Federal Eye: Homeland Security Goes Hollywood

A new reality television show focused on the agencies and employees of the Department of Homeland Security is sure to find fans among bureaucrats and department observers, and also is likely to draw some criticism from those who wonder if a primetime television show is the best use of the agency’s time.
Homeland Security USA
“Homeland Security USA,” debuts Jan. 6 and will profile various parts of DHS, including Customs and Border Protection. (Photo by Ron Tom/ABC)

“Homeland Security USA” debuts Jan. 6 on ABC. The show’s producer, Arnold Shapiro (creator of the CBS reality hit “Big Brother”) recently told the Hollywood Reporter, “I love investigative journalism, but that’s not what we’re doing. This show is heartening. It makes you feel good about these people who are doing their best to protect us.”

So while the show will highlight the main missions of the department’s 218,000 employees, it likely will not focus on less flattering incidents, like the DHS official arrested for hiring illegal immigrants, the department’s challenges with government contracting, or the inability of airport screeners to unionize.

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