Republican Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell has a theory. If pilotless drones are good enough to patrol the skies over Afghanistan than they are good enough to patrol the skies over Virginia.
“I think we ought to be using technology to make law enforcement more productive; it cuts down on manpower in the air — and more safe. That’s why we use it on the battlefield.”
He went further and threw a bone to civil rights concerns saying that privacy needed to be protected but if they could help save money and keep police officers safe that using them was “absolutely the right thing to do,”
The Department of Homeland Security recently launched a $4 million program to bring drones to local law enforcement across the US. It didn’t take long for Privacy advocates to begin sounding the warning sirens. A 2011 report by the ACLU warned that using drone surveillance would “profoundly change the character of public life in the United States”. They urged lawmakers to address privacy concerns before giving a green light to law enforcement to use them.
Alex Bronstein-Moffly, an analyst at First Street Research, earlier told The Huffington Post
“This is one of the few areas where the government is still spending money and investing. Lobbyists are pushing on legislation, regulations and appropriations. This is the trifecta of lobbying.”