The other afternoon we were sitting with friends in our Smoking Garden when a fast-moving object caught my eye. Shaped like a small airplane, it dashed across a span of sky visible between the limbs of a maple overhead and then halted. What we heard sounded like a large mosquito and was about just as welcome.

We presume it carried a camera and was spying on the neighborhood. When we edged outward for a closer look at the offending intruder, it scooted away, only to return several times later. Maybe it didn’t like being observed. For that matter, neither did we.

“If we had a gun, could we shoot it down?”

Well, how far does our airspace extend? And what rights do we have versus theirs? Whoever they are. Potential burglars looking for easy prey? Perverts? Even police?

The fact is, the experience is disconcerting, even before we get to the notorious role of drones in Afghanistan and other military – and not so military – zones.

Who’s responsible for this one? What’s it doing there, above us? And why?

Some of us cherish privacy as an essential American right embedded in the First Amendment. And then there’s that matter of my home is my castle, arising in English Common Law.

Besides, a mechanical drone has none of the freedom birds enjoy. The lower reaches of the sky should belong to natural aviators, not an artificial intruder.

Anyone else care to “chirp” in?


  1. I think someone enterprising should create a air cannon or soft foam ball gun that can be used to shoot them down if intrudes on one’s property. Avoid using guns as that can get you arrested.

  2. I read a news report of someone being arrested for shooting down a drone that was hovering outside his daughter’s bedroom window. Even so, I would be sorely tempted to shoot one down if it were over my property.

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