The air was hot and full of wind

11 Oct 2014 02:57
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Six months before, Chris had conceived of Freedom Flies as a reaction to what he considered to be a disturbing technological trend at the U.S.-Mexico border. One private militia group, the American Border Patrol, had built a twenty-pound, wooden drone to watch for undocumented immigrants. They had been flying the Border Hawk, as they named it, consistently since 2004. Now, the government was following their example. The U.S. Border Patrol had been testing unmanned aircraft for use along the Mexico line since 2003, and as of summer 2005, it was preparing to launch its first Predator. The government's goal was to enforce the law. Chris' concern was that they would enforce it selectively — focusing on the immigrants trying to reach the U.S. but not on the "border extremists" within the U.S. trying to stop m-shoesbox.

Chris liked to build robots, and he loved to help an underdog. So, in contrast to the Border Patrol, he made Freedom Flies according to a countervailing set of priorities: to help migrants survive the desert and to monitor their encounters with militias.

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