I was shocked and very pleased to see “Police Chiefs Urge Limits on Use of Drones” headlining a USA Today article. As more local police departments acquire—or anticipate “deputizing”— unmanned aircraft to conduct surveillance from our own skies, what could be troubling the mighty International Association of Chiefs of Police, whose members want to ride herd over domestic drones?
Explains Don Roby, chairman of the IACP’s Aviation Committee, “It’s very important that people understand that we won’t be up there with armed predator drones firing away.” Adds Roby, a Baltimore police captain, “Every time you hear someone talking about the use of these vehicles, it’s always in the context of a military operation. That’s not what we’re talking about.”
Come on, Captain, not all of us are that square.The Rutherford Institute’s John W.Whitehead knows exactly what you’re talking about. In an online article, “Privacy Rights Battleground Just Beginning,” he warns us of the plain, cold truth: “We have entered a new and frightening age when advancing technology is erasing the Fourth Amendment.…Some states are proposing to use drones to track citizens and closely monitor individuals based on the mere suspicions of law-enforcement officers.”
Where I live, in New York City, this flimsy suspicion can be based on anyone’s “furtive movements.” Eyes front and watch your posture!