Drone Hunting License
For Sale in Deer Trail…
…Come On, Everybody’s Doing It!
It’s been almost 150 years since tiny Deer Trail Colorado, population 500, made its mark on history. That was back in 1869, when town historians claim that the country’s first rodeo was held. Other towns may dispute that claim, but there’s no denying that Deer Trail is way ahead of the curve with its new ballot initiative: the town is voting on whether or not to issue permits to hunt drones, and the question is raising all kinds of interesting issues, ranging from gun rights to potential personal injury lawsuits.
The measure is more tongue-in-cheek than high political drama, and has become something of a fund-raiser for the tiny town, as well as a Marketing 101 lesson on how to get your name splashed across social media and the news. The story has been picked up by all the local papers, plus Time Magazine, the New York Daily News, and of course, Fox.
The initiative began as something of a protest, a reaction to the constant drumbeat of news about the NSA surveillance of American citizens combined with word that Colorado was one of several states being considered for the use of drones by civilians. The proposal’s author is Phillip Steel, who does take umbrage with the notion of being observed, saying, “Do we really want to become a surveillance society? That’s what I find really repugnant.” So he introduced the drone-hunting proposal, and a cottage industry has cropped up, ranging from revenues for the town, to mock permits, to personal injury lawyers investigating the ramifications of drones plummeting to the ground and potentially injuring innocent bystanders.
Since news of the proposal spread, the town has been receiving applications for the $25 licenses that it would authorize, sent in with personal checks by people anticipating its approval. The town’s clerk has been returning them as fast as she can, but can hardly keep up with the flow. Almost 1,000 had been received by Labor Day – an interesting statistic when considering that’s twice the number of the town’s residents.
Which apparently gave proponent Steel a notion: he’s been selling fake licenses to anybody that wants one for the novelty value for $25 bucks a pop through his website, indicating that he is giving a portion of his proceeds directly to the town that he’s made famous.
Potential hunters are also reminded that shooting at a drone opens them up to the same type of liability risks that any other hunting accident would.
Misha Foster, a representative for TSK Law Firm says,
“If anybody – whether hunter or non-hunter – is injured as a result of either being accidentally fired upon, or even having a targeted drone fall on them, the hunter who fired the shot can be held responsible if it can be proven that he was negligent in the way that he (or she) fired or handled the gun, and can be sued for damages including medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.”
She went on to say that in cases where someone dies as a result of a hunter trying to bag a drone, surviving family members are eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit. It is not yet clear whether, as in other hunting accidents, insurance would cover hunters’ liability in drone-hunting incidents.
The story has been great for the town’s visibility, if not for its reputation, and it should be noted that the FAA is not at all amused. An official warning has been dispatched, notifying all who are interested that shooting down a drone – manned or unmanned – is illegal, and subject to arrest and fines.
The vote is being held on October 8th – stay tuned!
Fried Chicken and Poverty Amongst Blacks
Go Hand in Hand, Evidently…
Colorado Lawmaker Claims Eating Fried Chicken is Linked to Poverty in Black Communities.
Wait, what? And who had the nerve to say something so ridiculous?
Republican State Senator Vicki Marble, that’s who. In this recent news story, Marble said ““When you look at life expectancy, there are problems in the black race: sickle-cell anemia is something that comes up, diabetes is something that’s prevalent in the genetic makeup and you just can’t help it. Although I’ve got to say, I’ve never had better barbecue and better chicken and ate better in my life than when you go down South.” Then she rambled on about how Mexicans stop eating vegetables when they move to the United States. “These things aren’t good for you,” Marble said. “There’s so many attributing factors as to why these graphs look the way they do.” Though she quickly added that blacks can’t help getting sickle cell anemia.
These and other strange and radical comments were made by Marble during an Economic Opportunity Poverty Reduction task force meeting on Wednesday where one of the topics up for discussion was the current racial disparities in the poverty rate.
Needless to say, these comments weren’t taken very kindly by most and left the room speechless.
Speechless except for Democrat Rhonda Fields who found them extremely insulting and in a heated reply to Marble’s outrageous claims said “one of the things I will not tolerate is racist and insensitive comments about African Americans, the color of their skin. You mentioned what we eat — I was highly offended by your remarks. I will not engage in a dialogue where I’m in the company, where you are using the stereotype references about African-Americans and chicken and food … I will just not tolerate that!”
She went on to say how the committee is here to find answers to the problems of poverty – not to discuss fried chicken.
Good for you, Rhonda!
Marble later (sort of) apologized saying that she did not mean to offend and was saddened at how she was taken out of context and misunderstood.
While the quasi-apology was appreciated, it still made her and the Republican party look like idiots. Which is not helpful at all when the focus should be on fighting poverty and finding ways to help those in need – no matter what party they are affiliated with.
And call my crazy, but I can’t for the life of me figure out what fried chicken or lack of vegetables has to do with poverty in minorities, can you?
Please leave a comment below on how you feel about this issue