"They're not going to be used for constant surveillance -- typically they can stay in the air for about 30 minutes, so they're only going to be used for specific missions," said Gretchen West, executive vice president of the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International.
So, the government, which has only your safety and well being in mind, will never use surveillance drones to monitor private citizens, which would violate the Constitution. No! Of course not! Impossible!
Because they can only stay in the air for half an hour! Cannot be a violation of the Constitution because they lack range!
OK. So. When the technology improves and flight times are extended to, say, 10 hours, what then? At what point does it become unconstitutional? Or is it already?
I only point this out because of the disingenuous line of reasoning. "Don't be absurd! This isn't to establish a police state -- the technology isn't sufficiently advanced for that! Only a fool would be worried and would deny our brave law enforcement personnel the tools they need to go about their dangerous work safely!"
Yeah, I buy it. Uh-huh.
Here's some more about how tyranny works in little ways to accomplish big ends. Today on Foxnews, I saw this item on how a Detroit public works fellow was fired for turning in a gun he found to the police. Yep. Fired.
Here's what happened. The guy was working cutting a lawn, presumably somewhere owned or maintained by the city, and found the gun in the grass. He held onto the gun, expecting the police to drive by on their rounds, at which point he would turn it in to them. Well, it being Detroit, the police didn't drive by, so he held onto the gun, finished his work, went home, and turned it in to his local police station.
Here's why he was fired. The city of Detroit has a rule saying that public works employees are not to carry guns. By retaining the gun, the guy violated the rule. So they fired him, 2 years before retirement. Fired him. OK, so these are the kind of bosses that need rules about their employees carrying guns, but that is beside the point.
Now, what is that rule for? It's for people who own guns legally or possess them illegally from actually bringing them to work with them and keeping them on their person. Is it for people who find guns in the course of their work? Does picking up the gun you find mean you should be fired for carrying a gun? The phrase "carrying a gun" implies that one has the gun because one is ready to use it. If you have a gun because you found it and are waiting for the police, you are not ready to use it and you have it for no other reason that to keep it away from someone who shouldn't have it.
But put this rule into the hands of rabid tyrants who don't want anyone to have guns and you have an excuse to become power hungry and destroy lives of law-abiding, decent, diligent individuals.
I should point out that I don't think the fellow handled the situation properly. He is in a crew that works out in the field somewhere, likely in different locations every day. It is quite possible that he has some sort of means of communication with The Office or The Dispatcher or Someone, say a phone or radio in the truck. He also likely has his own cell phone. He probably should have called the police if he could when they didn't drive by on their rounds and he probably should have let his superiors know what was going on if he couldn't. All that is in addition to handling the thing when it was likely to be evidence in some crime. I don't know how long it was in the grass or how long fingerprints last, but what you don't want is your own fingerprints on the thing.
Still, unless his supervisors have some reason to believe he put the gun in the grass or had the gun on him the whole time, and only claimed to have found it in the grass so he'd have an excuse for carrying a gun, they were out of line for firing the guy. Seriously: What was he supposed to do? Leave it there? Let one of his less reliable co-workers take it?
But to twist a rule like that and use it to ruin honest peoples' lives and then hide behind it as if you had no choice -- that is tyranny in action.