San Francisco Bans the Police Force’s Killer Robots After Backlash
Do you want robots that can kill in your city?
The police should have the tools they need to do their jobs but there needs to be transparency on what these tools are and when they should be used, frequent testing & training if all personnel using equipment. There also needs to be reviews of when they are actually used (test & live) as well as video for review. Hopefully these robots have multiple uses and armed uses is just one of many.
"[the] new “Law Enforcement Equipment Policy” filed by the San Francisco Police Department in response to California Assembly Bill 481, which requires a written inventory of the military equipment utilized by law enforcement. The document submitted to the board of supervisors includes — among other things — the Lenco BearCat armored vehicle, flash-bang grenades and 15 submachine guns."
"The inventory also names 17 robots owned by the SFPD — 12 of which are fully functioning. None are designed specifically for killing. They’re mostly used to detect and dispose of bombs — something police departments have been doing for years. The language included in the proposal effectively allows for these — or other — robots to kill in order to save the lives of officers or the public."
“Robots equipped in this manner would only be used in extreme circumstances to save or prevent further loss of innocent lives,” Allison Maxie, a spokesperson for SFPD said in a statement. Maxie added that robots could be armed with explosives, “to contact, incapacitate, or disorient violent, armed or dangerous suspect.”
- Brian 12/01/2022
This is ridiculous! Do we really need more weapons of war in the streets?
I support action to reduce crime, but once again there is little evidence that more guns on the streets in any hands will improve crime.
SF should use their money to improve community programs that target homelessness, poverty, and lack of job skills. Those are proven ways to reduce crime, and would be much less risky to those vulnerable on the streets.
- Frank_001 12/01/2022
"Supporters of the policy believe these robots are necessary with the mass shootings happening around the country. They reason that San Francisco is becoming increasingly dangerous and that having the option of robots in threatening situations is vital to their safety.
"Lazar argued that the robots would be helpful in situations involving an active shooter or a suicide bomber...."
Makes sense. Why put Law Enforcement Officers harmes way unnecessarily.
Stick in an AI module and without a doubt it will be more far effective than the entire Uvalde Police Force, and the rest of the incompetent Texas Law Enforcemment.
Seriously this is not being billed as RoboCop 2022, but as a remote device to be used in certain classes if dangerous situations.
- Adam 12/02/2022
Reading comprehension people, please. Also, totally leading headline. How many of you who clicked "oppose" would rethink it if the question were:
"Would you approve of your city arming remote-control bomb-defusing robots so they can be sent into dangerous situations instead of human beings?"
- Ukatsone 01/03/2023
I do not agree with arming robots. Using technology in this fashion is ridiculous. Instead, we should be spending money on social programs to help people which in turn would help identify and provide help for individuals suffering from mental illness. The data shows that minorities, especially Black Americans are targeted more often than White Americans, so one can only imagine how these new "robots " would be used.
- Lizspeace 12/20/2022
More guns? Ones with no emotion. Granted, sometimes we put guns in the hands of humans with no emotions but this? Makes me feel sick. 😵🤢🤬
Canadian gun laws should be a power of example to the US.
- 3030 Elder Way 12/14/2022
I think this is a great tool for law enforcement to use to save the lives of victims and police officers. It has been used, with succuss before.
- Ukatsone 12/12/2022
We need legislation which would outlaw this kind of militarization of the police.
- Martha 12/08/2022
While I can see some benefit in these killing machines, I don't trust our police to use them wisely. So, I don't want them used in our communities. Now, as a weapon of war, maybe.
- wpeckham 12/08/2022
#1 there is a concern that killing via ROBOT might put the entire public at risk, and that is not unreasonable. As long as the Robot is controlled by a human that will BE RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL ACTIONS I see that as managable. The problem is that our police forces have not always shown themselves to be excellent at controlling themselves, much less robots. #2 I like the idea that the officers I pay to protect us and keep the peace have an option to reduce the risk to their OWN lives. For this reason I support the concept, but want to see legislation to enforce accountability and responsability.
- Bruce 12/07/2022
I'm glad to see someone has the commonsense to know robot bombs are not policework. Robot bombs are government sanctioned terrorism.
- Brian 12/07/2022
Well, I'm glad saner heads prevailed.
I'm not opposed to using robots to help law enforcement in certain situations, but killer robots on the streets was far too dangerous.
- Mayra 12/07/2022
I support the use of robots in very specific situations such as those described - a mass shooter, terrorist situation for example where many lives are at stake including those of police officers.
our world has become ncreasingly more dangerous and citizens deserve protection. Better to be prepared and not need to use it than not be prepared at all.
"... is a good guy with a gun."
You know? Like the police?
sad story. Please read Reps.!
Lots of pushback from local SF citizens on this.
Police: we aren't going to give the robots guns, just explosives.
- Mindfulness 12/05/2022
What!....Don't we already have this...aberration, with the preponderance of 'non-deceleration' exercised while shooting till gun is empty. Then look to see, Oh! This was a mistake. Com'on!
This seems to me to be an escalated version of the show "Battle Bots". Only this one won't have any rules or guardrails.
Dear Senator Kim
Iam sadened to hear that the police and other law makers have come to the point of using killing machines to combat violence. Should we not confront and solve the problems that have created violence. The United States has the highest prison rates in the western world.The USA citizens uses more drugs legal and illegal , consumes more food, obesity,diabetes, hypertension,heart and lung diseases are common.More sucide are commited each day by our young people. Depression has become and epidemic, drug companies are making huge profits off of all these ills.
The Criminal Justice System cannot solve the many ills of our country killing people and incarceration. Actually our system of injustices have created many of the problems tht now exist.
Killer Robot Machines will not solve the problems of violence and mass murder. It is past time to bring the people that live in marginalized communities of color together address the problems of lack of decent housing, poor schools, desert food islands,etc.
Social problems that lead to violence cannot be solved by more guns, More guns more killing. We have become a nation that is using is using military weapons to kill their own citizens.
Is it any wonder that the US citizens are the most medicated,addicted, depressed ,material minded population in the western world.
Our future is our young people and too many are being lost by the continuing policies of our Militarized mindset that does not and will not solve the social problems of our times.
- Carina 12/04/2022
There are too many ways that this could go wrong and no one is held accountable or extenuating circumstances might determine who is represented and who isn't which would be discrimination--a lot of that going on now.
- Sandra 12/04/2022
What could possibly go wrong?
Well, when the military decided to make war "safer" for soldiers war became much deadlier for civilians. Mistakes happen, like when soldiers using drones accidently bomb civilian targets because the intel was wrong.
I personally prefer the community policing approach where cops walk a beat and get to know people in their community, the mental health professional approach to handling 911 calls about people having breakdowns (instead of sending in cops with little to no training who just shoot them).
Robots can be very useful when defusing a bomb but defusing tense situations maybe not so much.