Tuesday Mar 05, 201303:16 AM GMT
Most Americans find drones unconstitutional: Poll
Tue Mar 5, 2013 3:15AM
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In a stark about turn, most Americans now have significant reservations about the use of drones by government and law enforcement.

 

Just six months ago, a survey conducted by The Associated Press and The National Constitution Center found that more Americans supported than opposed the use of surveillance drones by domestic law enforcement agencies.

 

In that poll, only 36 percent said that they “strongly” opposed or “somewhat” opposed police use of drones, where as 44 percent supported the idea of police using unmanned aerial vehicles to track suspects and carry out investigations.

 

The poll also found that only one third of Americans were significantly concerned about their privacy being eroded by the adoption of drones by police forces throughout the country.

 

Now, in a Reason-Rupe national survey, sixty percent of respondents believe that, to some degree, the use of drones by local law enforcement to conduct surveillance without a warrant is an invasion of personal privacy.

 

In addition, 47 percent of respondents to the latest poll said they believe they have a right to destroy a UAV if it flies over their house without their permission.

 

Shifting to overseas use of drones, In a Pew Research Center study, conducted some five months ago, more than half of the American public were found to be in support of targeted assassinations with drones, even if that meant killing American citizens.

 

Now, in the latest poll, 57 percent of respondents say it is unconstitutional to order the killing of Americans overseas. Even more - 59 percent - believe that the federal government abuses its power when it comes to targeted strikes.

 

The latest survey indicates that along with an exponential increase in the use of drones both at home and abroad has come a sustained push back from the general public.

 

More attention has been focused on the use of UAVs and the potential they have for eviscerating fundamental rights to privacy and the due process of law.

 

More and more states and cities are advancing and/or passing laws against the use of drones in their skies by government and law agencies.

 

Plans to roll out drones by law enforcement agencies in Washington State, Virginia, California and New York have recently met with stern opposition. Prison Planet

FACTS & FIGURES

In a major step toward opening U.S. skies to thousands of unmanned drones, federal officials in February solicited proposals to create six drone test sites around the country. AP

 

According to the Department of Homeland Security’s website, the U.S. government has already been using drones domestically for several years, but remains mostly mum on their missions. RT

 

Privacy advocates worry that a proliferation of drones will lead to a "surveillance society" in which the movements of Americans are routinely monitored, tracked, recorded and scrutinized by the authorities. AP

 

A data dump of government documents secured via the Freedom of Information Act, released in August shows that the roll out of domestic unmanned drones will, for the most part, be focused solely on the mass surveillance of the American people. Prison Planet

AHT/AGB

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