I believe the Herald is right to question the use of video cameras with facial recognition capabilities in Durango’s downtown area (“Durango police consider downtown surveillance cameras,” Feb. 18). I’m also glad the Herald questioned the lack of response by the public (“Our view: Are we all good with surveillance now?” Feb. 27).
There is a lot of private surveillance in stores these days, some of which may be of the streets and parking lots outside their storefronts. I believe the police make good use of this surveillance when crimes occur.
While Main Avenue from Fifth Street to Buckley Park is the prime area for parades and public demonstrations now, who is to say it’s the only area the police might want to watch in the future? What about College Drive or north Main Avenue as that district develops? Will police surveillance become the norm for private parking lots in our several shopping malls?
If public surveillance becomes the norm for downtown, there is likely to be less resistance if it is requested in other areas in, say, 10 or 15 years.
I appreciate our Durango policemen and women and the work they do and I want them to have the best equipment available to do their work, but I believe public surveillance provides a slippery slope leading to further lack of privacy in our society where that privacy is already being sorely tested by social media.
I believe public surveillance by the police is inappropriate, however well meant.
Ross A. WorleyDurango