"Oh, and the Constitutional issue has already been resolved - the courts have consistently found that so long as only general imaging is being gathered, nobody has a reasonable expectation of privacy in traversing highways or any private area open to the general public."
Perhaps there is a need for some "Constitutional revision", such as this:
Citizens protected by this Constitution possess an inalienable right to privacy in their persons, businesses, and homes, and while they are in public.
It shall be a violation of this Constitution for the United States or for the several States to violate or invade the individual privacy of citizens by use of physical, mechanical, or electronic means or by the use of devices on land, on water, below the ground, or from the air.
This protection shall extend to all lawful communications and acts by an individual citizen or between two or more citizens, including content that is spoken, written, or electronically transmitted. It shall extend to citizens regardless of their location, whether in private or in public.
The only exceptions will be as governed by the Fourth Amendment of this Constitution.
I hear ya'. Frequently the issue non-lawyers run into when addressing public policy or legislation is that we tend to try to structure the language of the objective sought either too broadly or too narrowly. Laws are viewed in both senses but not at the same time.
For example law prohibiting unreasonable search-and-seizure are interpreted narrowly to include possessions in a vehicle - but then law enforcement considers "large amounts of cash" as "possible contraband". Therefore using the broad interpretation of commerce law, they could then seize privately held cash when being transported because the reason for the possession of the cash was suspect and subject to prohibition of transporting contraband across state lines.
One narrow Constitutional provision entitles us to be free from search and seizure but in the above case, the broader interpretation of the greater common good contained in Commerce Law supersedes the right to freedom from search and seizure. The ruling turned on the term "reasonable".
Law enforcement requires certain levity to search and seize things and to intrude on privacy for the "greater common good". The entire scope of that Constitutional entitlement forms the demarcation for any legislation or amendment to the Constitution.
If it's too broad or too narrow to be implemented without conflicting with some other stipulated feature of the Constitution, local, state or federal law, courts will strike it down.
'Can't permit absolute freedom from search or observation or your law enforcement forces become crippled and feckless. Go too far in the other direction and we have a police state where nobody has any privacy at all.
Because of the expansion of technology largely and increasingly laws are playing catch-up with capabilities. Too often, what is possible technologically far exceeds the scope of precedent law to define what is permissible or prohibited legally.
So in regard to public observation of private persons and vehicles. We are on the upward slope of a parabola tracing technological advances and so we live in a time like no other - where almost literally every day, we are as individuals and as a culture confronted by circumstances in which legal boundaries are not well defined about what is or is not permitted.
Hopefully future generations will live with less daily uncertainty in their lives but our fortune is to be caught like bugs in amber in a time when uncertainty is the order of the day. We must learn to accept it or be driven mad, but we certainly don't have to like it.