Americans United for Separation of Church and State

Greater Phoenix Chapter

Old Home Home Contact Us Upcoming
Church State Issues Report Church State Violations Join
Email List
Email List
Membership Donations Request
Facebook Meetup Links Send Letter to Editor


Church State Issues

A lame excuse to flush the 1st Amendment down the toilet in Phoenix

Aug 23, 2014

Arizona Republic

Phoenix City Councilman Michael Nowakowski wants to flush the 1st Amendment down the toilet???

In this article I suspect that Phoenix City Councilman Michael Nowakowski really wants to protect the members of the Phoenix Police from being video taped by civilian drones.

If this law is passed Phoenix Police helicopters and drones will still be allowed to video tape us, while it will be illegal for civilian drones to video tape the police.

Phoenix City Councilman Michael Nowakowski is just trying to flush the 1st Amendment rights of the people that videotape the police using a convoluted line of BS about protecting our 4th Amendment rights.

Why we must protect people from drones

Proposal would limit drone usage in Phoenix

The Republic | 3:49 p.m. MST August 22, 2014

Into the Mind: Phoenix City Councilman Michael Nowakowski explains possible drone regulations in Phoenix.

You and Councilman Sal DiCiccio are offering an ordinance on drones. Why now?

These private drones are now becoming very affordable. Many camera-equipped models are now available for under $100. As the number of drones continues to grow, so does the threat to personal privacy. Privacy law must keep pace with technological advancements.

Have there been problems with drones invading people's privacy?

Yes, both my office and Councilman Sal DiCiccio's office have received calls from individuals who believe they have had their privacy invaded by a drone.

Do drones have legitimate uses?

Certainly there are valid uses. We want to use technology to the fullest, but we also want to protect people's privacy.

Most of us have heard that Amazon is exploring the use of drones to deliver packages. Some photographers are using them for aerial shots of weddings or other events or for overhead shots of a home that is being sold. We are trying to balance legitimate uses with privacy protections, and we encourage feedback from the public.

Few other cities have regulated drones. Why should Phoenix be among the first?

Why not? We want Phoenix to be a leader in protecting privacy.

Should owners have to register drones with the city?

No. Drone owners should be free to operate their drone in any legitimate way they want, and government should not monitor that. We are just establishing that the one thing they cannot do is fly their camera-equipped drone over someone else's private property and take pictures or video. It is as simple as that.

You're trying to stop peeping Toms, but you're also preparing for police use of drones. What are the issues there?

The Fourth Amendment protects Americans from unreasonable searches and seizures. The police cannot simply search your backyard without just cause. This ordinance is consistent with that principle. Drones cannot be a means of getting around the Fourth Amendment.

You're looking for input. How will this play out?

I encourage anyone with input to please call my office (602-262-7492) or Councilman DiCiccio's office (602-262-7491) and provide their suggestions or thoughts. We are looking to take a draft of the ordinance to the Public Safety and Veterans committee in October.