What's needed is *education* -- not regulation.
Most people don't deliberately endanger the lives of others just for fun -- most do it out of ignorance of the risks and potential outcomes.
Just as the rates of smoking have dropped enormously since we began educating folks as to the dangers -- so we need to educate the neophyte and ignorant drone operators as to their responsibilities and obligations in respect to the public's safety.
The situation regarding "near misses" is a *lot* more complex than most of the public realize.
For example, the various pilots groups around the world are acting *very* politically to try and get drones virtually regulated out of existence. Why? Because they know full-well that these craft represent a direct threat to their livelihoods -- more so than the threat to their lives. To this end, virtually *any* sighting of an unidentified flying object is now called a "near miss with a drone". I recall when they were once all depicted as flying saucer incidents -- but now "drone" is the scapegoat de jour.
The media has also enjoyed depicting these craft as evil and likely to bring down airliners all over the world. This kind of sensationalist sizzle attracts eyeballs and that's what the media is after. Forget objectivity, research and facts -- anything goes in the quest for $$$$.
So let's look at the facts...
These craft have been around for quite a few years now and are being flown all over the world. So how many times *have* they crashed into full-sized aircraft?
None. Zero. Zilch, not a single actual collision between an aircraft and a drone.
Compare this to the number of bird-strikes encountered every year. Birdstrike accounts for about $1.4 billion of damage ($900M in the USA alone) inflicted on full-sized aircraft each year and have caused over 250 deaths since 1988.
Remember the numbers for drones: zero, none, zilch -- and not a red cent.
Over 11,000 bird-strike incidents (with full-sized aircraft) were reported in 2013. During that same period the number for drone-strikes was... ZERO!
We all remember the United flight that crashed into the Hundson river as a result of bird-strike. Not a recreational drone to be seen at the time.
The bottom line is that yes, there is a small degree of risk associated with the use of recreational drones but it is very, very clear that those who fear for their jobs and those who want to sell the sensational have both worked to grossly over-state the magnitude of this problem.
Of course there will always be idiots who act in a way that endangers the safety of others. However, even under existing laws, the act of reckless endangerment covers that type of activity -- whether it's done with a drone, a car or an axe.
Once drones are made illegal, only the criminals will have them. Now is that a situation we really want?
Never underestimate the stupidity of a politician -- history is filled with evidence as to the risks associated with doing so.
Cite for some of the stats used above