By Joe Wright
North Dakota recently made international news as the first U.S. state to legalize weaponized drones for use on its own citizens. This concept previously sparked outrage when India – a supposedly constitutional republic – said they would begin applying non-lethal weapons to drones for crowd control.
Now, the very sponsor of the legislation that enables the potential use of weaponized drones on American soil claims he was hoodwinked by how this came to pass.
In a classic case of unintended consequences, the original sponsor, Republican state representative Rick Becker said he was unhappy with the way legislation turned out.
His original intention was to prevent law enforcement officials from using the unmanned aerial vehicles from conducting surveillance on private property without a warrant.
“In my opinion there should be a nice, red line: Drones should not be weaponised,” he said.
So, then, how did drones actually become weaponized if this was supposedly not the intention? The original language explicitly prohibits it. Apparently, we can thank the state’s police union who, of course, would want to secure more toys to add to their arsenal. Emphasis added.
The original draft of the House Bill 1328 said: “A state agency may not authorize the use of, including granting a permit to use, an unmanned aircraft armed with any lethal or non-lethal weapons, including firearms, pepper spray, bean bag guns, mace, and sound-based weapons.”
However, the state’s police union amended the Bill, limiting the ban to only lethal weapons, meaning that sounds cannons or rubber bullets could be used on police drones, according to The Daily Beast.
But, as the article goes on to say, Rep. Becker chose in the end not to fight it. He seems to be having a version of buyer’s remorse now, as it may have finally dawned on him what this could unleash across the nation as the precedent is set.
Mr Becker said that he didn’t fight the amendments, telling the Arstehnica website that he wanted “the Bill to pass to at least require warrants.”
However, he said that he will aim to change the law in two-years’ time when North Dakota’s House of Representatives returns to session.
If we have learned anything about the use of weaponized drones across the planet thus far, is that they ALWAYS have unintended consequences. Probably not unintended by the psychopaths that design these things for use on civilians, or by the even worse psychopaths who consciously murder people with them. Yeah, psychos like this guy:
Others, however, like this former drone pilot can’t sleep so well at night. Drone operators are, in fact, leaving in droves; it has even led to a cut in flights by the Air Force. Sure, this particular operator was directly responsible for 1,626 deaths, but many deaths have occurred from supposedly non-lethal weapons and are sure to occur in even greater numbers when they are unleashed by joystick:
The bottom line is that the remote control use of any type of weapon – sometimes from thousands of miles away – weighs heavily upon the idea of a free society, as well as weighing heavily upon any person who possesses an intact conscience.
Joe Wright’s articles can be found at ActivistPost.com