New York Senator Charles Schumer believes privately operated drones are a hazard and should be regulated by the federal government.
The Democrat characterizes New York as the “wild west” of private drone use. He said the devices are a hazard to commercial aviation and pedestrians.
Earlier this year a judge dismissed a Federal Aviation Administration case against a man who used a drone to shoot a promotional video. Patrick Geraghty, the administrative law judge for the National Transportation Safety Board, said the FAA erred by fining the operator because there no enforceable rules on drone use.
Schumer’s regulation would impose strict regulations on the civilian use of drones, especially those used by private investigators.
Schumer backs military use of killer drones
The Democrat senator, however, approves of the government using drones.
In April, 2013 he said drone technology is “amazing” and should be used along the U.S. border with Mexico.
“We certainly need more drones. We need more air. The people on the border made that clear to us, and it should increase the effectiveness rate dramatically, in my opinion at least,” he declared during a Senate Judiciary hearing on the Immigration Modernization Act.
In September, 2013 Schumer joined a lobbying effort on behalf of a coalition of defense contractors and universities to make upstate New York a federally-designated drone testing site.
"Once we become the center for testing this unmanned aircraft and seeing how they fit the civilian uses into our airspace, it’s going to bring hundreds of companies here," Schumer said at a press conference at Hancock Air Field in Syracuse where the 174th Air National Guard Attack Wing is based. The Air National Guard operates drones at the base.
Schumer has praised the illegal use of drones by the military. “Remember, George Bush wouldn’t let the drones go into Pakistan, and Al Qaeda flourished. The president did, and terrorism is way down. He’s pursuing the tactic in Yemen, and I think it’s working,” he said last year.
Last November the antiwar group National Campaign for Nonviolent Resistance descended on Schumer’s office to demand he speak out against the unconstitutional killer drone program.
Four activists were arrested outside the Democrat’s office while reciting the names of children killed by U.S. drones.