I think you mean to say, "If drones are illegal, only criminals will have drones".
Yes. And drones don't kill people, people kill people. It's actually kinda funny to watch a lot of normally "progressive" types who've always reflexively ridiculed the sport shooting types for their defensive postures regarding irrational gun laws
And you think that's going to get by undetected?
Scenario: pop away some sort of cover on a flatbed truck a couple of blocks from the White House. Fire up a very un-sexy, easy to build hexa than can easy lift a few pounds. It could quickly self-navigate straight up to a couple hundred or more feet (these things can climb like rockets), above any local building tops, and then move horizontally towards the White House at the better part of 50mph. Who CARES if it can be detected? If there are people on the White House lawn doing some sort of camera op or press conference, that bird would be right over them in the blink of an eye, and could drop something nasty with shocking accuracy, within a meter of a typical presser podium. It would happen so fast that being detected or not doesn't really matter.
I love these machines. They're great for all sorts of fun and creative uses. But a smart, determined bad guy really could put them to some very evil, if innovative, use. And that's the point. New government limits on their use make the bad guys just laugh!
the payload of the DJI Phantom line is measured in low-double-digit grams
I have a pimped out Phantom. The extra payload it carries:
3) GoPro with Battery
4) Video Downlink TX with cloverleaf antenna
6) Various related cables, mounting hardware
Which all adds up to almost 340g - and it still maneuvers like crazy, and stays up for an easy 15 minutes.
No, it's not a lot. But it's lot more than low-double-digits. My bigger rig can easily carry 8 or 9 pounds while climbing to hundreds of feet faster than you'd believe. And it can go horizontally at a pretty frightening speed.
What is the security risk posed by small drones? In your explanation please include "Drones are better than mortars at delivering explosives because..."
Because a drone can autonomously delivery a brick of C4 to within a meter of where you want it to go on your first try. And you can be miles away while it does that. "Miles away" is also handy if you're using it to deliver an aerosoled nerve agent or some bio-nasty substance over, say, a presidential press conference in the Rose Garden, or a speech on the steps of the Capital.
Is it a law that they have to do it?
No, this is them annoying some of their customers (people who want to fly illegally in the DC no-fly zone) in an attempt to preempt knee-jerk over compensating by federal authorities. The feds would rather just ban the devices entirely, period.
And so we have a 700 square mile area where flying a 3-pound DJI quadcopter is very, very illegal, and has been for years. That DJI is updating their GPS-aware flight control firmware to make it impossible to fly their devices in that area is a sign that they don't want their products to be simply banned outright. We are not at the sweet spot of rational rules and implementation on this one, not even close. And of course someone with true mal intent isn't going to be bothered by the rules or the firmware limitations anyway.
I've heard those things and they often sound like a pissed off weedeater.
You have no idea what you're talking about. A passing car is louder than a small, well-tuned quad with quality balanced rotors at ground level. 30' in the air? Barely audible. There are noisier ones. I work with a 25-pound octo that sounds completely horrifying, and I know when and where to operate it. But thanks for speaking out of ignorance - it helps to put all of this stuff in perspective.
There must be agencies seeding these projects, commercial and open source, with toxic contributors injected there to deliberately contaminate the code with such bugs. The further fact that one never sees responsible persons identified, removed and blacklisted suggests that contamination is top down.
Or, you are yourself a toxic seed planted by The Man in order to foment FUD and make good people not want to be part of these projects. Or something like that. Give it a rest with the absurd conspiracy crap.
the Navy *does* have some recently-deployed point defense laser technology designed to shoot down incoming cruise missiles
The problem is that the incoming drone could easily be flying below tree-top height. Like, 20 feet off the ground. Laser counter measures would be shooting at a target that would have large office buildings and other structures directly behind it.
Either way - in the absence of authority, there is no reason to fear the abuse of authority.
That's not really a system of thought, though, because it doesn't define a system. It describes the way that some people may, out of pure irrationality, imagine the world to work in their childish fantasies. When you get a bunch of people together and decide (look, a group decision!) that there will be no group decisions (?) forming any sort of authority or formal structure governing how they all interact, you're basically walking away from civilization. At best, you're setting up for medieval feudalism. True, you don't have to fear abuse from an authority you establish
So even if you get 90% of the people to vote that all gays should be put to death on a funeral pyre the law STILL wouldn't pass because the 10% voting against it would include the gay people and because they are only ones affected, and the way they are affected is so extreme
Really? So, you'd be in favor of the government making sure they know who is and who isn't gay in order properly run skewed elections and referenda? How about simply having a clause in your constitution that says (as ours does) that everyone is treated equally under the law? Isn't that simpler than getting the government involved in keeping lists of who is on which part of a given spectrum of sexual orientation or skin color, etc?
You want to know who also agrees with you, terrorists agree with you, which is why they use terror to force people to do things that the terrorists want them to do.
Really? You equate our constitutional system of checks and balances to terrorism? Terrorism is the simple majority deciding that they can tell you what to do. Are you OK with 51% of the population deciding that you no longer get to speak freely, because they don't like what you have to say? That's democracy. A constitutional republic (which we are, that's not really open for debate, even when you confuse it with something else, like a monarchy - and you're very confused, here) has tools in place to prevent people like you from rallying 51% of the people who vote to do things like have the other 49% enslaved, or killed, or whatever you'd like to see done in the name of your having the majority of simple votes on the matter.
Democracy ie representing the majority
The majority is not always right, and the people who wrote our constitution knew that. It's why the country isn't run like one bit PTA meeting or a dog club. We have three branches of government, and the legislative branch is broken up in to two houses specifically to blunt the tyranny of the majority. You either haven't ever studied the basics of how the constitution is structured, or you have, and your pretending you haven't so that you can make your really bad analogies. Please try to get it straight.