Killer Robots Outlawed

( – The members of the San Francisco city legislature have voted unanimously to backtrack on last week’s decision to allow the use of “killer robots” by the local police.

All eleven members of San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors are Democrats. Last week they voted 8-3 in favor of approving the deployment of explosive-armed robots to kill or incapacitate criminals.

Their vote made national headlines, sparking backlash from various sides of the political spectrum. That includes far-left activists and officials who slammed the use of killer robots as something that would “disproportionately” affect people of color and poorer Americans.

With their new vote, the San Francisco supervisors decided to ban the police from deploying robots in any lethal manner, The National Review reported, citing The Associated Press.

However, the liberal-dominated city’s Supervisory Board still directed the issue to one of its committees for additional discussions.

Among those who voted in the minority against the use of killer robots last week was board president Shamman Walton, who said it would hurt disadvantaged groups.

Another opponent of last week’s preliminary decision, Supervisor Dean Preston, welcomed its reversal in a prepared statement released after the new vote.

“The people of San Francisco have spoken loud and clear: There is no place for killer police robots in our city,” Preston said.

“We should be working on ways to decrease the use of force by local law enforcement, not giving them new tools to kill people,” he argued.

Earlier this week, ahead of the second vote, there was a protest rally outside the San Francisco city hall.

“We all saw that movie … No Killer Robots,” read the protesters’ banners.

The police the San Francisco board had approved last week stipulated that a limited number of senior law enforcement officials would be able to authorize the use of deadly killer robots.

It said they would be able to do that only in cases “when [there is] risk of loss of life to members of the public or officers” and the killer robots “outweigh other force options available to SFPD.”

The policy allowed the police “to contact, incapacitate, or disorient violent, armed, or dangerous suspects” through robots armed with explosives.

The San Francisco Police Department has a dozen functioning robots.

Those have been used for inspecting suspected bombs, executing warrants, and accessing hazmat and low-visibility situations.

The votes by the San Francisco’s board came after a new California state law – California Assembly Bill 481 – required that local legislatures issue directions on how their police departments could utilize military-style equipment, such as robots.