Congressman warns Americans the drones are coming, introduces privacy legislation
Under the FAA Reauthorization Act the United States government has authorized the use of 30,000 drones to start flying over all major cities, spying on the American people, by the year 2020. Representative Ted Poe rightfully sees this as a violation of the fourth amendment and warns us that the drones are coming in this letter:
But whether we like it or not, the drones are coming.
Who will operate these drones, and what will be their mission? Could it be a suspicious government agent who thinks someone looks kind of funny? The EPA bureaucrat who wants to snoop on somebody’s farm and watch Bessie the cow graze in the pasture? Or a nosy neighbor who wants to make sure someone’s shutters are pretty and the flowers don’t violate the homeowners’ association rules? This is the kind of world that Americans could face as we enter this uncharted and unprecedented world of drone technology. Just because Big Brother can look into someone’s back yard with a drone doesn’t mean they should. That’s why we have the Fourth Amendment. Congress has the legal obligation to ensure that the Fourth Amendment rights of private citizens are protected in this new “drone world
Like Ted Poe, I feel the fourth amendment should protect us from such an assault on our rights, but sadly the fourth amendment isn’t enough to stop an overreaching federal government so he has introduced a bill called the Preserving American Privacy Act which would stop the FAA from flying the drones without a warrant.
With the increased technology of surveillance, Congress must be proactive in protecting civilians from drone surveillance by law enforcement and other private citizens. This bill will ensure the privacy of Americans is protected by establishing guidelines about when and for what purpose law enforcement agencies, private citizens, and businesses can use drones
I would normally write that I believe this is great news but there is one small problem with this bill; Ted Poe will be asking the same people who voted to authorize the use of drones in the first place to admit they made a mistake and restrict their usage and I simply don’t see that happening.
Even if the Tea Party led House moves to rectify their mistake there is no way this bill will pass the Democrat controlled Senate–Ted Poe is right, the drones are coming.