In the last few years we have seen an evolution in the hobby world the likes of which we may never see again. The single rotor helicopter that was easy enough for anyone to pilot out of the box (and affordable RC gear even for the beginner) gave way to a multirotor which morphed into a video transmittal and recording device that with GPS can fly a mile away. Sure, that is simplifying matters a bit; but you get the drift.
A few months ago, we stumbled upon video footage of drones that have been turned into weapons. Literally. Some inventive folks have built quadrotors with guns attached to them that actually function pretty well. One of these inventors is a 15-year-old boy from Connecticut. Let me clarify that we have seen weaponized unmanned aerial vehicles via the shadowy figures at places like DARPA and the military; but these quadcopters you see in the videos are commercial. What I mean by commercial is that anyone can purchase the necessary components to create one in his garage.
From what we have gathered so far, all indications point to the fact that the quadcopters seen in these videos are legal. It seems to be a slightly grey area and a bit nerve-wracking considering the recent violence perpetrated with guns, yet they are offered the same second amendment rights as other firearms would.
Think of the implications this type of technology affords. Gun violence so far requires some crazed lunatic(s) with a firearm who in the deep recesses of his mind understands he may be living his final day. A drone that can fly up to 2000 feet away and deliver devastation via sub machine gun remotely adds a whole new wrinkle. Although I suppose you could also strap explosives to one and cause a great deal of damage as well. When we started selling these quadcopters the idea that they would someday be used this way was unimaginable to us, yet here we are.
I suppose it is only a matter of time before some jerk takes the fun and pure beauty out of a really cool piece of technology and turns it into something dark and sinister. Don’t get me wrong, I am a full proponent of the 2 nd amendment and believe that honest, law abiding citizens should have every right to own and carry a gun. However, strapping a firearm to a quadcopter isn’t useful for defense or hunting. The notion that these exist and are in the public sphere is a scary thought.
As always, fly safe.