It looks as if Congress is going to pass a bill making it harder to get a fake drivers license. Under the proposed law, states will have to require a photo id, a birth certificate, proof of a valid social security number, and evidence of an address before a license can be issued.
This seems to make sense to me, drivers licenses are accepted in lots of places (like airports) as proof that someone is who they say they are, and I don't see any reason why we can't tighten up the requirements for getting one. And it doesn't sound to me like the new requirements will be that burdensome, at least for someone who actually has a social security number and a real address and all the rest of that stuff.
Needless to say, the ACLU is against. One of their arguments is that having all this data in one place will lead to identify theft by dishonest DMV workers. Yeah, we all know how concerned the ACLU is about identify theft.
Another ACLU argument is well, frankly, more than a little weird:
What we're afraid of is that a national ID will act as a precipitate, and all the information gathering that's going on out there randomly and disconnectedly will get organized around the ID and lead to the creation of what amounts to national database of sensitive information about American citizens.
HUH? And then there is the old chestnut, that having these additional requirements will all-of-a-sudden reveal the bigotry that lurks right beneath the surface of all Americans:
A 1990 General Accounting Office study found almost 20 percent of employers engaged in discriminatory practices. A super driver's license would have the same effect on a massive scale, as Latinos, Asians, Muslims, and persons of Middle Eastern descent become subject to ceaseless status and identity checks from police, banks, merchants and others.
Yes I know, we are all closet members of the KKK, and all we need is a little encouragement and we reach for the noose and the gas can. Even so, this doesn't make any sense. How does making it easier for a "foreign lookin'" guy to prove he is a good American going to lead to discrimination against him?
What I think is really going on here is the ACLU is just reflexively against anything that makes law enforcement more effective. I guess that sort of thinking has its place on occasion, but last time I checked there was this little problem of terrorists trying to murder us in our beds and stuff.