Imminent proliferation of drones in American skies requires widespread civilian debate
by: J. D. Heyes
Saturday, March 30, 2013
The country is set to become a nation of drones in the coming years, as experts predict an explosion of unmanned aerial vehicles numbering in the tens of thousands that will literally turn the U.S. into the surveillance society futurists have warned about.
What’s more, not all of these drones will be operated by government and police agencies; in fact, the vast majority will likely be in private hands. And Congress, as usual, has shirked its Legislative Branch duty to ensure the integrity of Americans’ constitutional privacy protections by punting that responsibility to unelected bureaucrats at the Federal Aviation Administration.
Lawmakers have ordered the FAA to open up U.S. skies to drones by 2015, as well as devise the rules that will govern their use. Industry experts believe the decision will “see thousands of drones criss-crossing the sky within a few years,” the Agence France Presse reported March 18.