Global Positioning Systems
In the near future, nearly all cars and vehicles will have, in addition to GPS mapping, a system that will enable law enforcement to track the location of each vehicle in case of an emergency or a serious crime. This will prevent known criminals from fleeing in vehicles and will eliminate the danger of high-speed police chases. Suspects can be easily tracked and arrested once they reach a destination where it is safe for police apprehend them.
Now before the conspiracy buffs start crying about an invasion of personal rights and privacy by federal authorities, consider the fact that a GPS system in 2006 costs from less than $100 to over $2000 — about the same price as a television. But only a few people have GPS in their car. It is strange that it is not more popular. There is no cost for the GPS service, which is provided free by the U.S. Government. The receiver itself is all you need. In the near future, it will become as standard as having a car radio and CD player.
GPS systems do not provide two-way communication at the moment. It’s not possible to track every GPS receiver currently, but such devices are being used by law enforcement in increasing quantities. Some judicial systems are using the technology with convicted sex offenders, juvenile offenders, and criminals under house arrest or parole. Current technology consists of a device the size of a pager, which must be worn by a convicted offender, an ankle bracelet and digital mapping software on the law enforcement side. The bracelet sends a signal to a nearby transmitter that will give the police the exact location of the individual at all times. Currently such units cost over $1000 a piece. However, as with all new technology, we can expect the price to plummet within a few years.
Soon it will become more convenient to slap a bracelet on a non-violent offender, let him work off his court costs and his victim’s restitution, while keeping him under house arrest. When this happens, just about all convicted non-violent criminals are going to be given the option of wearing a bracelet of some type – one that cannot be removed easily.
A lot of parents will begin to use this with their children. In fact, this is already being done with inexpensive GPS cell phones that work in lightly obstructed areas. GPS bracelets bring peace of mind to the parent of an autistic child who might wander off and not know where he is or be able to tell a stranger his home address. Many tragedies and kidnappings of young children will be avoided in the near future.
Likewise, people who own expensive and well-loved pets are buying GPS chips that are implanted under the animal’s skin. If the animal goes missing, the owner can know immediately where to find it. Implanted devices will soon be an option for people for safety reasons since bracelets and rings ought to be taken off near machinery and in certain athletic activities.
Numerous types of GPS devices will soon spread into the general population when people discover the safety that it will bring them. The elimination of crime will hopefully be a volunteer endeavor, but I can foresee a move to make it mandatory that every individual wear a GPS device of some type. We need to take the steps now to avoid that.