Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Is There a Drone In Your Backyard?
Townhall.com ^ | May 17, 2012 | Judge Andrew Napolitano

Posted on 05/17/2012 3:43:34 AM PDT by Kaslin

Earlier this week, the federal government announced that the Air Force might be dispatching drones to a backyard near you. The stated purpose of these spies in the sky is to assist local police to find missing persons or kidnap victims, or to chase bad guys.

If the drone operator sees you doing anything of interest (Is your fertilizer for the roses or to fuel a bomb? Is that Sudafed for your cold or your meth habit? Are you smoking in front of your kids?), the feds say they may take a picture of you and keep it. The feds predict that they will dispatch or authorize about 30,000 of these unmanned aerial vehicles across America in the next 10 years. Meanwhile, more than 300 local and state police departments are awaiting federal permission to use the drones they already have purchased -- usually with federal stimulus funds.

The government is out of control.

If the police use a drone without a warrant to see who or what is in your backyard or your bedroom, or if while looking for a missing child the drone takes a picture of you in your backyard or bedroom and the government keeps the picture, its use is unnatural and unconstitutional.

I say "unnatural" because we all have a natural right to privacy; it is a fundamental right that is inherent in our humanity. All of us have times of the day and moments in our behavior when we expect that no one -- least of all the government -- will be watching. When the government watches us during those times, it violates our natural right to privacy. It also violates our constitutional right to privacy. The Supreme Court has held consistently that numerous clauses in the Bill of Rights keep the government at bay without a warrant.

Even when we don't have an expectation of privacy, we do have a right to be left alone. But merely watching us in public isn't enough for the police, as many street corner cameras are equipped with listening devices and tiny megaphones. We can expect that these devices will soon bark commands: "Put down that BlackBerry." "Look to your right before crossing." "Don't kiss her; a car is coming." Actually, Big Brother is coming, and he's not smiling.

Big Brother is watching from the skies, as well as the streets. This started when the Department of Defense decided to offer help to police -- and they are prepared to accept. Never mind that the military may not lawfully operate within our borders, except in the case of rebellion, and then only when publicly authorized by the president. Never mind that the military may not lawfully be used for law enforcement, except in the case of disaster, and then only when publicly authorized by the president. And never mind that this use of drones by the Air Force was not the result of legislation debated and enacted by Congress, but was done under the authority of the president alone.

Add to all this the use of drones to kill people. President Obama has argued that he can use drones to kill Americans overseas, whose deaths he believes will keep us all safer, without any constitutional due process whatsoever. His attorney general has argued that the president's careful consideration of each target and the narrow use of deadly drones are an adequate substitute for due process. Of course, no court has ever ruled that way. The president's national security adviser has argued that the use of drones is humane since they are "surgical" and only kill their targets. Of course, that's not true, but it misses the point. Without a declaration of war, the president can't lawfully kill anyone, no matter how humane his killing.

How long will it be before the Air Force and the police adopt the unconstitutional arguments of the president's wrongheaded advisers and use the drones not only to spy but also to kill Americans in America?

The whole reason we have a Bill of Rights is to assure that tyranny does not happen here, to guarantee that the government to which we have supposedly consented will leave us alone. Do you think the government accepts that? Would you feel safe with a drone in your backyard? Would you feel like you were in America?


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Editorial; Government
KEYWORDS: civilliberties; domesticdrones; drones; dronesus; privacy
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-60 next last

1 posted on 05/17/2012 3:43:35 AM PDT by Kaslin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Ready. Set. PULL!


2 posted on 05/17/2012 3:44:12 AM PDT by AmonAmarth (Wherever you go...There you are)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

already here....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QzrS0BVJynM


3 posted on 05/17/2012 3:52:11 AM PDT by Doogle (((USAF.68-73..8th TFW Ubon Thailand..never store a threat you should have eliminated)))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: AmonAmarth

I have no problem if drones are used to find a missing child or adult, but I have a big problem if they are used to spy on people for using fertilizer in their garden, or what they do in their bedroom


4 posted on 05/17/2012 3:54:43 AM PDT by Kaslin (Acronym for OBAMA: One Big Ass Mistake America)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: AmonAmarth
Ready. Set. PULL!

Won't work, these things fly too high (invisible). We're not longer a free people.

Anybody have a plan?

5 posted on 05/17/2012 3:55:57 AM PDT by Ramcat (Thank You American Veterans)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Ramcat

Thousands of metallic balloons? I dont know, but if it comes down to it, some smart Freeper will find a way to take them out.


6 posted on 05/17/2012 4:01:27 AM PDT by AmonAmarth (Wherever you go...There you are)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Ramcat; netmilsmom; tomdavidd; Freeper; Gvl_M3; Flotsam_Jetsome; Berlin_Freeper; Hotlanta Mike; ...
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

We're no longer a free people.

Anybody have a plan?

. . . . Check out article.

7 posted on 05/17/2012 4:11:11 AM PDT by LucyT
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

The problem is, and the Judge rightly points it out, these “policies” are sprung from the mind of the President, and not coming from Congress, where they should.

Here is the fundamental problem for all who vote and take it too lightly. If the President can order the military to spy on child molesters, kidnappers and other criminals, where is the line drawn? Can he later add to the list other undesirables, scofflaws and malcontents? Do these people realize, when they vote as if it’s American Idol, how much power over THEMSELVES they give him?

Congress is the problem here. It is abdication of their duty. We need to elect a Congress that is responsible and a true guardian of our liberties.

I’m afraid for us. I was an Oathtaker, and now I am an Oathkeeper of the US Constitution. Lately, however, I’ve been studying the words of the anti-Federalists and their fear of the power of the Presidency, I’m seeing, was well justified. For that matter, they also were fearful of a too powerful Congress. I’m not saying the Constituion is flawed, but too much power is in the hands of flawed men.


8 posted on 05/17/2012 4:13:37 AM PDT by Alas Babylon!
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: AmonAmarth
I see a big market for camouflage netting. Think of all those cool WWII movies. Also how about “fake” stuff on the ground to drive the feds crazy. Once again think of the “fake” army Patton commanded prior to D-Day. If millions do it we can Alinsky them. Overload the system. If the idiot Iranians can take down a drone we surely can.
9 posted on 05/17/2012 4:15:23 AM PDT by prof.h.mandingo (Buck v. Bell (1927) An idea whose time has come (for extreme liberalism))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Alas Babylon!
One other more serious thought. If we really push our local Tea Parties and control the locals we can control who is the Sheriff and Chief of Police. Once we have them we can say “shove it” to local drone use. I see lawsuits like snowfall because of this. Link it to Obama also. Our local Tea Party is quite strong and we are taking over many local and state positions in the county. Next the entire state.
10 posted on 05/17/2012 4:20:36 AM PDT by prof.h.mandingo (Buck v. Bell (1927) An idea whose time has come (for extreme liberalism))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

In your BEDROOM? How can one of these things see into a bedroom?


11 posted on 05/17/2012 4:30:09 AM PDT by PastorBooks
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Alas Babylon!; LucyT

Already have helocopters flying over at regular intervals. Have sat on front porch and watched planes being refueled in mid-air just above tree lines....And then there was the night that an air”plane” without any sound shone a bright light into the house waking us all up. It too traveled just above the tree lines. If they want to know what we’re doing at my house chances are they already have the information.


12 posted on 05/17/2012 4:32:10 AM PDT by hoosiermama
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

By jamming the entire GPS band, which is fairly easy, you will force the bird to return to home, since the bird won’t know it’s location. And it doesn’t require very much RF energy to jam GPS, since the GPS signal is coming from a satellite.


13 posted on 05/17/2012 4:35:05 AM PDT by TejanoJim
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

We not only have drones... we have had them in our area for quite a while. Remember the Sniper killings in Maryland/D.C./Virginia? That is when I spotted our first drone. Since then, we see them on occasion. I once saw several together... somewhat like a squadron (three total). I assumed (and falsely so) that it was due to our neighborhood being so close to D.C. I should have known better....


14 posted on 05/17/2012 4:35:24 AM PDT by momtothree
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: prof.h.mandingo

15 posted on 05/17/2012 4:43:51 AM PDT by 6SJ7 (Meh.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: 6SJ7

Little hot to garden in....Infact I may want to stop running around in my back yard with just undies on (or at least wave at them....Grandma used to say: “If they haven’t seen it before the won’t know what it is, If they have it’s nothing new.”


16 posted on 05/17/2012 4:52:07 AM PDT by hoosiermama
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: PastorBooks
In your BEDROOM? How can one of these things see into a bedroom?

Ever see a high-resolution oblique angle photograph?

Some of the "micro-drones" that researchers are working on are more like large insects than aircraft. Some are like your kid's mini radio-controlled helicopters. You could easily sidle-up to an upper floor window and peer in. I should say that when 'targeting' a specific US citizen or residence we are probably still looking at law enforcement having to get a warrant. But even that could slip over time.

17 posted on 05/17/2012 4:58:03 AM PDT by Tallguy (It's all 'Fun and Games' until somebody loses an eye!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: hoosiermama

Now this is from my Dad — Helicopters regularly flew low over their neighborhood going to the heliport on the roof of a close by hotel. Supposedly one of his heighbors was arrested for aiming his shovel at the helicopter as it flew over.


18 posted on 05/17/2012 5:09:22 AM PDT by Elderberry
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: PastorBooks

“In your BEDROOM? How can one of these things see into a bedroom?”

IR is a good possibility unless you’ve got good insulation.


19 posted on 05/17/2012 5:19:06 AM PDT by A Strict Constructionist (We're an Oligrachy...Resistance to tyrants is obedience to God. Thomas Jefferson)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Elderberry

About a week to ten days before someone in the world gets the Shhhhhhit bombed out of them we can hear cargo planes flying from midnight till dawn. Any one in the neighborhood COULD make it public knowledge and alert the world. (Crane navel depot is near. Had a friend write a message on one delivered to Sedam)


20 posted on 05/17/2012 5:23:11 AM PDT by hoosiermama
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: Tallguy

Had a relative work on satalittes. They have the tech to recognize voices and track them for some time (Remember the NYT article on OBL cell phone?...Could we have known where Osama was for years and been monitoring him? Would Obama put his political position (killing him) above the knowledge we were obtaining?


21 posted on 05/17/2012 5:28:20 AM PDT by hoosiermama
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

I think the solution is the choke the horse. Feed the drones with an unbelievable amount of false positives. Fake images of weapons, aircraft, etc would require a visit from the police. Of course you have a 1st amendment right to artistic expression so the fake images are perfectly legal. If such fakery can drive up the cost and make the surveillance worthless maybe it’ll go away. Maybe.


22 posted on 05/17/2012 5:30:24 AM PDT by muir_redwoods (I like Obamacare because Granny signed the will and I need the cash)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: AmonAmarth

Personally, I’m looking forward to adding one to my trophy wall.


23 posted on 05/17/2012 5:30:24 AM PDT by bossmechanic (If all else fails, hit it with a hammer)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

24 posted on 05/17/2012 5:33:38 AM PDT by tomkat (:^)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: muir_redwoods

             [click]

25 posted on 05/17/2012 5:38:19 AM PDT by tomkat (:^)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: Ramcat

They have to be controlled by a radio signal...

Build a transmitter.


26 posted on 05/17/2012 5:41:14 AM PDT by Sir Francis Dashwood ("Arjuna, why have you have dropped your bow???")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: AmonAmarth

Radio transmitter.


27 posted on 05/17/2012 5:41:51 AM PDT by Sir Francis Dashwood ("Arjuna, why have you have dropped your bow???")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: prof.h.mandingo
If the idiot Iranians can take down a drone we surely can.

One maybe, 30,000 no chance. Unless, we quit our jobs and or quit running our businesses and take this up full time?

28 posted on 05/17/2012 5:42:11 AM PDT by Ramcat (Thank You American Veterans)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: prof.h.mandingo

Radio transmitters can easily be built.

Jamming signals like the ones used to disrupt cell phone use in certain places are easily available.


29 posted on 05/17/2012 5:43:55 AM PDT by Sir Francis Dashwood ("Arjuna, why have you have dropped your bow???")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: muir_redwoods
Of course you have a 1st amendment right to artistic expression so the fake images are perfectly legal.

No Constitutional expert here, but don't you already have a right to privacy and against non warranted searches?

30 posted on 05/17/2012 5:45:07 AM PDT by Ramcat (Thank You American Veterans)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: TejanoJim

Yes...

If you can block cell phone use...


31 posted on 05/17/2012 5:46:24 AM PDT by Sir Francis Dashwood ("Arjuna, why have you have dropped your bow???")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Most of the drones they are talking about here are very small, and will be flying very low. They will have to stay below controlled airspace, and they will be more effective at their task the lower they are.

I think some form of “defense” will be effective.

Check here for a picture of a typical “municipal” drone:
http://personalliberty.com/2011/11/29/aerial-drones-may-be-coming-to-your-town/


32 posted on 05/17/2012 5:48:26 AM PDT by Born to Conserve
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Ramcat
"Won't work, these things fly too high (invisible). We're not longer a free people. Anybody have a plan?"

They have to take off and land sometime. While expensive, something like this may have some promise....

33 posted on 05/17/2012 5:50:35 AM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

I teach systems for mission planning. The capabilities for knowing just about everything going on across the planet are imppressive. Modern technologies and the literal web of communications has made nothing truly secret in the world. Big Brother has the tools, it’s whether or not they will be used against Joe-Citizen. I remeber when satelite photo capabilities was classified - today we have Google Earth which has pretty much mapped the Earths and should make it easy for folks to understand that they cannot hide if Big Brother wants to find/look at them - the image of my house is good enough to tell it’s a metal roof and to tell if my lawn mower is out of the shed. That said, they also ensure our military is the most potent force in the world, despite the lack of will to turn her loose. All the technology and capabilities of weapons systems/smart bombs, etc., is useless without the intelligence to allow for identifying/reaching a target.


34 posted on 05/17/2012 5:53:01 AM PDT by trebb ("If a man will not work, he should not eat" From 2 Thes 3)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Born to Conserve

I’m reminded of a military tactics handbook that asks and answers the question of “how can infantry defeat an armored division.” The answer is basically to shift the battlefield to where infantry has the advantage. These low-flying drones will have a radio-van to control them. Hacking or jamming the data-stream might not work 100 percent of the time. But taking out that radio-van... works every time.


35 posted on 05/17/2012 5:54:20 AM PDT by Tallguy (It's all 'Fun and Games' until somebody loses an eye!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: Ramcat

Nope. Not from the air. The FAA authorizes flight paths over your property all the time and you have no standing in court to challenge them.


36 posted on 05/17/2012 5:55:59 AM PDT by muir_redwoods (I like Obamacare because Granny signed the will and I need the cash)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: Tallguy

My understanding is that the drone is controlled from a far remote [military] base. You aren’t going to take out the controller.

I think the “choking” solution is the answer.
Find out what they’re looking for and set up a BUNCH of fakes of that item (in your mother-in-law’s backyard).


37 posted on 05/17/2012 5:57:01 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter knows whom he's working for)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

To: MrB
My understanding is that the drone is controlled from a far remote [military] base. You aren’t going to take out the controller.

You'd be correct where "predator-class" drones are concerned. A lot of military assistance to law enforcement takes the form of providing human technical assistance and selling/lending hardware to police tactical units. Eventually you'll see police forces purchasing their own mini & micro-drones and having the US Army or USAF teaching them how to employ them tactically. I may have been pre-mature in addressing the latter, but only by a few years I think. Those low-flying (small) drones will most likely be controlled by a mobile ground unit.

38 posted on 05/17/2012 6:06:08 AM PDT by Tallguy (It's all 'Fun and Games' until somebody loses an eye!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: MrB

In Bosnia, the Serbs used broken-down tanks and trucks as bait. They would drag them into a field from the woods on a foggy night, and build a wood fire inside the engine space, for a heat sig, plus set up a microwave, radio etc inside.

We dropped million-dollar ordnance onto old piles of junk, over and over.


39 posted on 05/17/2012 6:06:58 AM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: trebb

If our govt turned overtly tyrannical, they have tools at their disposal to find and eliminate “enemies of the state” that Hitler, Stalin and Mao could only have dreamed of.


40 posted on 05/17/2012 6:08:33 AM PDT by Travis McGee (www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
How long will it be before the Air Force and the police adopt the unconstitutional arguments of the president's wrongheaded advisers and use the drones not only to spy but also to kill Americans in America?

Too late already done, who cares if it is in the US or Yemen. It is still an assassination of a US citizen, not engaged with arms against the US, without a trial nor in an act to capture or arrest him. If the drone had not worked they were going to us the US military to kill him. These drones are just the next step here at home.

We have already lost the argument.

41 posted on 05/17/2012 6:21:30 AM PDT by Ratman83
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Ramcat
Anybody have a plan?

Plenty of plans. Scarcity of backbones.

42 posted on 05/17/2012 6:36:11 AM PDT by Lady Lucky (Non-compliant, not govt-issued, and not voting for Romney.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: hoosiermama

“... I may want to stop running around in my back yard with just undies on”

Dang, Hoosiermama... you are WILD!!


43 posted on 05/17/2012 6:53:09 AM PDT by momtothree
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: momtothree
Live in the middle of the state forest...The only thing wild around here are the deer, turkeys, coyotes, rattlesnakes and sometimes the local yokels who think no one will notice a few extra cultivated plants.....They are wildly wrong....That's why we see the helicopters. Usually come when we complain to the proper authorities about certain out of county vehicles and trespassers. As my granpa used to say: "Dang if I ain't gettin tired of this hell raisen on my properties!" Me and the neighbor with the shooten range don't put up with much! Never been overly sociable to strangers.
44 posted on 05/17/2012 7:48:24 AM PDT by hoosiermama
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 43 | View Replies]

To: hoosiermama

Well.... sounds like you don’t have to worry about tan lines! LOL! Your property must be beautiful... even with some helicopters and “cultivated plants”. If I step on my front porch, I have eyes on me. In my backyard... eyes. One day... I want to live somewhere where I can walk outside and not have human eyes on me.


45 posted on 05/17/2012 7:59:00 AM PDT by momtothree
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 44 | View Replies]

To: Lady Lucky
Plenty of plans. Scarcity of backbones.

Sadly agree. We're all owned. We don't own our property, even if we have deed to it.

46 posted on 05/17/2012 8:36:31 AM PDT by Ramcat (Thank You American Veterans)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 42 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Hold muh beer.


47 posted on 05/17/2012 8:43:48 AM PDT by Georgia Girl 2 (The only purpose of a pistol is to fight your way back to the rifle you should never have dropped.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: AmonAmarth
Ready. Set. PULL!

LOL... Though they might be out of shotgun range, I'm thinking a .308 could take one down. Or at least leave a mark! :-)

48 posted on 05/17/2012 8:49:48 AM PDT by meyer (Fluke - the new "F" word)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Ramcat
Anybody have a plan?

Well....

One --->could<--- rig up a model airplane with a nose camara, and suitable armament, for strafing runs, or even kamakaze attacks.

49 posted on 05/17/2012 9:07:59 AM PDT by going hot (Happiness is a momma deuce)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Doogle; LucyT; SWAMPSNIPER
The drone in the Elgin, IL, video appears to be armed...

It is my theory that drones are now in the front-line of anti-drone defense as part of the protective envelope surrounding VIPs, such as POTUS and summits of leaders. Drones, including hobby UAVs can be used in a variety of ways as offensive weapons.

These drones in IL can be part of a NOTAM enforcement screen putting teeth into FAA no-fly orders near VIPs.

For example, if a DHS drone detects an individual attempting to launch a potentially deadly UAV near POTUS, such as near Air Force One or an outdoor speaking engagement, deadly force could be pre-authorized to take out the persons attempting such a launch, especially if intelligence already had the launcher on a watch list...kind of like the Israelis preemptively taking out Palestinian rocket launching teams.

50 posted on 05/17/2012 9:52:26 AM PDT by Seizethecarp
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-60 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson