tagged w/ Ted Poe
By Congressman Ted Poe
Mr. Speaker, the domestic use of drones is on the way. There will be more eyes in the sky looking over America.
According to the FAA, by 2015, it will allow the use of drones nationwide, and by 2030, 30,000 drones will be cruising American skies – looking, observing, filming, and hovering over America. They will come whether we like it or not. We will not know where they are or what they’re looking at or what their purpose is, whether it’s permitted or not permitted, whether it’s lawful or unlawful, and we really won’t know who is flying those drones.
Sometimes drones are good. We can thank drones for helping us track terrorists overseas and for helping us catch outlaws on the border. Legitimate uses by government and private citizens do occur, but a nosy neighbor or a Big Brother government does not have the right to look into a window without legitimate cause or, in the case of the government, probable cause.
Mr. Speaker, drones are easy to find. I learned from a simple Google search that you can buy a drone on eBay or at your local Radio Shack. It’s very easy. And as technology changes, Congress has the responsibility to be proactive and to protect the Fourth Amendment right of all citizens. The Fourth Amendment states, “The right of people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated.”
It doesn’t take a constitutional law professor to see why legislation is needed to protect the rights of the American people. The right of a reasonable expectation of privacy is a constitutional right. Any form of snooping or spying, surveillance or eavesdropping goes against the rights that are outlined in the Constitution.
Today, I will reintroduce the Preserving American Privacy Act because it’s time for Congress to be proactive in protecting the rights of civilians from private use and government use of drones. This legislation balances individual constitutional rights with legitimate government activity and the private use of drones. We don’t have time to wait until 2030 when there are 30,000 drones in the sky.
This bill sets clear guidelines, protects individual privacy and informs peace officers so they will know what they can do and what they cannot do under the law. Nobody should be able to use drones for whatever purpose they want. This bill will make it clear for what purpose law enforcement and citizens and businesses can use drones.
Full text of speech: http://poe.house.gov/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=8977:the-drones-are-coming-page-ii&catid=102:speeches&Itemid=1By Congressman Ted Poe
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