The three leading Republican candidates for mayor all support the use of controversial unmanned drones to watch over New York City–as long as cameras aren’t peering into their bedrooms.
“I’m absolutely for it,” said former MTA Chair Joe Lhota, speaking at a candidates’ forum hosted by the New York Young Republican Club in Midtown Tuesday night. “Drones to be used from a surveillance point of view, so long as it understands people’s privacy rights.”
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Mayor Michael Bloomberg said he has concerns about controversial drones watching the city’s population, but he simply sees them as an inevitability.
“We’re just going into a different world, uncharted,” he said during his weekly WOR radio program, pointing to ubiquitous cameras on the outside of buildings. “Like it or not, what people can do–or governments can do–is different and you can to some extent control [it], but you can’t keep the tides from coming in. We’re going to have more visibility and less privacy. I don’t see how you stop that. It’s not a question whether I think it’s good or bad, I just don’t see how you can stop that because we’re going to have them.”
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New York may join the list of states across the country that have been curtailing the use of unmanned drones. Newly-elected Bronx Assemblyman Luis Sepulveda just announced he is “preparing legislation to circumscribe the domestic usage of drones.”
“The Assemblyman believes that not enough attention is being paid to their operations in the United States, and envisions that without appropriate safeguards, they can be used for malicious and intrusive purposes,” a press release from Mr. Sepulveda’s office declared. “Mr. Sepulveda is open to coordinating with civil libertarian groups to ensure that any bill originating from his office will be adequately comprehensive to “stay ahead” of this burgeoning technology.”
Today, political types were focused on Chris Matthews’ screaming, drugs and drones. Here’s our roundup of the day’s best Tweets from the campaign trail.