The Real ID: Shouldn’t These Agencies Already Be Doing This?

William Faulkner quite famously said, “I never know what I think about something until I read what I’ve written on it,” and believe me when I tell you that when it comes to Real ID’s here in the States, that statement couldn’t be more applicable to my own (lack of) position. I do understand that the states feel bullied into doing their jobs when issuing driver’s licenses and/or id cards, and I do sort of get that people are worried about their civil liberties (the right to get identification cards based on false information, for instance). Okay, you caught me, in all honesty, I don’t have a lack of position, I have no problem with Real ID’s nor with their supposed Big Brother implications.

Real ID’s for those of you who may not know–because a.) it may have gotten lost in the “Bush sucks” blather of the past three or so years, b.) it doesn’t affect you (yet), c.) it won’t affect you (ever) because you’re neither American nor a legal resident, or d.) it’s boring to some as it involves politics–anyway, Real ID’s are those identification cards that everyone was up in arms about in 2005 and calling “national id cards.” Remember? In short (very short), every citizen and legal resident of the United States of America must have either a driver’s license issued by their state (or commonwealth) that adheres to the Real ID Act’s national requirements or said individual must carry proof of citizenship, such as a passport, when traveling outside their state (or commonwealth) or into federal buildings. Sounds simple, huh? Well, not so much.

Dum dum dum! The witching hour of December 31, 2009 is creeping up, and it seems the good people of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts are trying to figure out what to do about it. Massachusetts has been sued for not making it easy or even (can it be? oh, the humanity!) denying illegal immigrants driver’s licenses (I can’t yet even google this story or blog it because it so inflames me). And now (gasp! horror!), the Commonwealth just doesn’t know how it can possibly cope with verifying name, address, and citizenship (via passport, birth certificate, social security number, etc. It’s not rocket science, after all. We can all prove we belong here–those of us who do, anyway); according to an article in the Boston Globe, Martha Coakley (Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts) says it will cost an exorbitant amount of money to comply with this outlandish requirement (I’m thinking it must be the citizenship thing, right? I mean we already give our names and addresses and have our photo taken).

I mean, here we are asking the Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) to (and I quote) “verify the identity of people who apply for or renew driver licenses, starting next spring, and to make sure they are American citizens or US residents” (the Globe article, linked above). Verify their identity? Make sure they’re here legally and can therefore drive legally? Geez, whatever next? Cameras in my living room and kitchen linked to the FBI? Homeland Security doing weekly checks of my underwear drawer? Being followed by the feds when I go to the supermarket, having them document my purchases? Clearly, we are one step away from the government policing our very thoughts!

Give me a break! I am still so angry about the expensive (to taxpayers, er, those here legally. You know the ones, the ones who actually PAY taxes) lawsuit against Massachusetts for not granting some illegal alien a driver’s license that I can’t see straight. I thought you had to be a citizen or legal resident to get a driver’s license, wasn’t that part of the point, to make sure you’re legal to drive? Or are you legal to drive even if you aren’t in the country legally? How could that possibly be? Ugh! It seems, too, with the Real ID thing (if you live in a state/commonwealth that complies), if you don’t drive for whatever reason, you’ll still need to toddle off to the RMV and get an id card (maybe like the one pictured above).

States (and commonwealths) who do not comply to these rigorous standards of issuing driver’s licenses to people they’ve actually identified as the people being issued driver’s licenses/identification cards will suffer penalties. Not the least of which is that anyone from such a noncomplying state (or commonwealth) will need to travel with a passport via air (yes, even travel confined to within the borders of the good ole U. S. of A.) and even to enter federal buildings. I don’t see people embracing that, particularly with how backed up the passport agencies are trying to meet the standards set for them to correctly identify and verify name, address, citizenship of everyone being issued a passport. Whatever next? Will we expect the electric company to provide electricity to our entire homes? The garbage collectors to identify correctly and remove all our garbage?

So, anyway, I’ve clearly worked out exactly what I think of this Real ID thingumabob, huh? So much for Faulkner.


27 thoughts on “The Real ID: Shouldn’t These Agencies Already Be Doing This?

  1. grrr! having connection problems today and lost my oh so witty comment.

    to summarize my lost comment: don’t remember hearing about this. requirements don’t look too different from what we have to do now to get a license in ohio. what’s the big deal?

    i know, not witty or amusing in any way. oh well. *shrugs*

  2. I do remember hearing about this and it was a friend of mine who told me about this and he was in a rage. He thinks it’s another way for the goverment to keep track of where we are at all times. (something about a locator chip) And he does not use easy-pass or cell phones or on-star for this reason. I think he is overly paranoid, but maybe has some kind of point!?

  3. lolol you’re so cute when you get fired up šŸ˜›
    And yeah…OK, I have issues with a Big Brother state but…I actually thing being made to carry a piece of ID around isn’t a terrible thing, I always do (mostly cause I got carded buying smokes when I was 25, I laughed but it was stupid).
    This nonsense with the illegals though…come on. They’re not allowed to be in the country but they need a driver’s licence?! Wtf?

  4. I hate when that happens, Kerry! And I’m like you, it’s not really that different than what we have now, and I don’t think it’s a problem.

    Well, Maggie, if your friend has a job and pays taxes, uses a credit card, a phone (land line will do), has health insurance, drives a car, then the feds know exactly what he’s doing and where he is at all times. Well, if they care enough to look at him; that’s the thing, people think they’re so special that governmental resources will be expended looking at every little thing, but that makes no sense; I’m sure that people are “flagged” as worthy of a closer look–like when you travel and are from the middle east and buy a one way ticket with cash . . . may be worth a closer peep, you know? Frankly, all the Real Id does is show that we HAVE the papers we have, a birth cert, passport, social security number; it’s not like it’s got a tracking device in it, and if it does, um . . . only take it with you when you travel or whatever? Just my thoughts, though, I think FAR more people feel as your friend does. šŸ˜€

    My sentiments exactly, Pilgrim!

  5. I think our government is running a deficit in common sense due to an over abundance of trying to take the last cent.

    All in all it makes no sense to me.

  6. See!! That’s the thing that fires me up, too, Tally!! Gaaah. And we already carry id, it’s just now it’s going to be id that we had to show our passport, social, or birth cert to verify our legal right to be here. So what? Gah! (I must be on a cuteness kick today! lmao!!)

  7. You think they’re trying to make money, Rainy? Hmmmm, I hadn’t thought of that possibility. I guess that could be part of it, but I think that the terrorists and illegal immigrants are the main impetus–what they lovingly refer to as national security, and I guess I’m pretty fond of feeling more secure, too, even if it’s not the most sensible way to go about it–actually, though, I don’t know what would make more sense. Sigh.

  8. Now you confused me too. LOL

    Here we still have ID’s, and they come in very handy. I am in favour of them, and it can get you in any institutions. I’d hate to carry around one of my passports, because of their size mainly.
    But there are many people living here (non-Spanish) who think it’s a pain the the bum to carry an ID, and many of them are driving illegally too, not paying taxes, and not even having the basic insurance specified by law while driving.
    Some of them don’t even know there’s such thing after living here for decades!!! I am not joking. Or it also could be that they are just playing stupid- I’m not sure.

    You are supposed to get your Spanish licence after six months of residing here. It’s not a big deal, you don’t have to take a new exam, it’s just a formality. But this is the law here.
    If the Guardia Civil (road police) stops you, it’s up to you to prove/not prove the date you entered the country, and they can soooo track you down.
    These people are so naive. Even purchasing their plane tickets or any other shopping with their foreign credit cards, using their mobile phones or Internet on Spanish territory, they can be tracked down. It’s pretty clear to me.
    So, I’m wondering. Is it worth living in hiding for decades just to avoid paying some tax?
    These people (the ones who expect Spanish people to speak English and insist on having English products in our supermarkets) are revolted when they make a payment at the cashier with a credit card and are asked for ID. Passport works just as well but of course they don’t like carrying that around either (in case it’s discovered too easily that they have entered MORE than six months ago, yet not have a Spanish licence yet).

    Here, I think it makes sense to have it, it is for our own protection, especially while shopping. Although, having said that, people who can produce fake Credit cards, can also produce fake ID’s. Yet it’s just a little more comforting to me when I have to prove the name on my Card coincides with the name on my ID.
    I am actually revolted when I am NOT asked for an ID if I purchase something by card.
    As for the people here in Spain who are whining about it, I have one reply. “If you don’t like it, go back where you came from. Nobody forced you to be here. Or?”

    But you are in a real pickle there, Fuzzy:) How about having some chocolates to make us forget all these annoying things that will make our hair go white, for what?
    (Now my blood is boiling too, I need to chill)

  9. I honestly get all irritated at the whole “illegal” thingy. (hmm…I should probably use a different, more mature word than “thingy”…but hey…it’s all-emcompassing!)

    I don’t understand how people feel they have all sorts of rights when they don’t reside here legally. They don’t pay taxes, they drive illegally, they rally for rights, etc. etc, etc. Well, hmmm…if you followed the rules, and entered and resided here legally…would this be a problem?

    So….now they fuss because we want to ID them. Hmmm. But, then I laugh at our government…it’s like they’re saying “we know you’re here, here’s your id, now…we’re still not going to do anything about the fact that you’re breaking the rules” Grrrr.

    What’s the solution..I have no idea :p

    As to the big brother part. Well, if BB wants to know what kind and how much toilet paper I buy weekly…let him. No skin off my back. I figure…if I’m not breaking any laws, then why should I care if I have to carry a national ID or not.

    I agree with whomever above (I don’t feel like scrolling) said “the ones who are fussing are probably up to no good”

  10. Ohio has been doing this for the last several years. Which until I had my wallet stolen wouldn’t have bothered me at all. But, I had to provide my Social Security Card and a certified copy of my birth certificate. Thank heavens that my parents had picked those up a few months earlier for themselves, my brother and myself as we only had our birth registrations. It would have been fun to drive license-less to another state to handle that otherwise. But, in normal circumstances it hasn’t been bad at all. I just have to remember to go to the safe deposit box BEFORE I do anything license related now. šŸ™‚ As for the illegals…GRRR

  11. Glad for the P^ss and vinegar out of our Fuzzy! I’m just annoyed at myself for not going and getting my passport renewed ages ago because now there are backed up lines for miles. Behind the scenes all the Mexicans from our Mexican restaurant are spending every dollar to get all their families smuggled in here before Gringos do something awful to them. Alas.

  12. Don’t worry all, I’ve come up with the perfect solution.

    Any illegals that you find seem to be more than welcome to dissapear into the UK, INFACT WHEN THEY ARRIVE WE’LL PROBABLY GIVE THEM A 3 BED HOUSE EACH AND A FREE CAR EVERY 2 YEARS!!!!!

    Feck I hate this damned Government and can’t wait to find somewhere else to move to so I can respect their ways and commune my fat arse in my own property with my hard earned licences.

    I have nothing to fear from ID cards.

    I’ll gladly carry them, but this penny pinching government of ours wants UK residents to PAY Ā£100+ for the right to carry one and any immigrant will get them free!!!!!!!!

    I’m going off on obscure tangents again aren’t I. Guess thats cos this subject really gets my goat, gonna leave now before I start a nose bleed thru too much pressure building in my head!!!

  13. Personally, I have no problem with a National ID, but if the gov’t thinks this is the way to stem the tide of illegal immigration I think they’re in for a rude awakening. You can buy any other fake ID in Tijuana for $100, give this one a year or two and they’ll forge that too. Maybe its time we started cracking down on the employers who hire the illegals…no job, no money, no reason to come right? My fathers family came to this country from England….legally…in 1920. My mothers parents from Austria….legally…in 1923, there was a quota then and though my grandmother was allowed in, my grandfather was not. He spent 9 years in Canada waiting to enter…legally. They loved their adopted country, worked hard, raised their families and enjoyed its benefits. This is a country of immigrants…unless we’re all Native American, our families all came from other places. But the flood of illegals across the border is shameful…reward them with citizenship and drivers licenses? I don’t think so…take the recent influx of Somalians to the state of Maine. They were fleeing political persecution and some lame brain in Washington figured Maine was a good place to put them….not quite sure why since this state has a very low minority population and is struggling economically. Thousands of families flooded the city of Lewiston which could hardly take care of its own to start with. The welfare resources were overwhelmed, public housing overcrowded, the state had to provide transportation, health care, food stamps, English language classes, which very few of them took advantage of and jobs. It got so bad the ex Mayor had to say we can’t handle any more….for which he was promptly fired for racism. Our largest employer…L.L.Beans was paid subsidies by the state to hire them. My sister in law works there and said it was a nightmare, very few of them speak enough English to function, the Somalian men will not take orders from women superiors, they take prayer breaks 8 times a day and don’t even get me started on their bathroom habits…..shall we say they DO NOT use toilet paper and leave it at that? I have no problem with legal immigrants coming here, but please, accept our language and customs…and please…use toilet paper!! …Wow, that was a little mini rant of my own…sorry…should have blogged that myself I guess!!

  14. Well, Fanta, clearly these annoying people who refuse to follow the law and who cannot get their act together need only hold a demonstration! Organize them all to march in the streets, protesting the laws of Spain while waving the flags of their homelands in one hand and signs proclaiming their illegal status in the other. Soon, they will be listened to, granted amnesty, taught Spanish, given scholarships and grants, medical and social security benefits; heck, they’ll even get to vote!! That’s the answer! Haha. They ask for id’s here, too, when you use a credit card to buy things because identity theft is such a huge problem. I’m not sure that this system will change the id theft problem, as you say, these can and will be faked, too. But it will make it harder and less prevalent. Oh, and we (in America) are not allowed to say “if you don’t like it, go back where you come from.” I still blame the French, it was they after all who stuck us with that stupid Statue that everyone takes to mean anyone who gets here by any means has the right to be here. Forget the laws, forget the Constitution, forget what’s just plain right and wrong. Grrrr. I need chocolate, too, now!! lol, thanks for your wonderful comments, Fanta!

    Agreed, Ang! And lol @ the toilet paper thing. I couldn’t agree more; I can’t imagine that anyone cares what I say or do, either. In fact, I feel sorry for anyone who has to listen in on my life. It bores ME! šŸ˜€

    Good thinking, LO, so many people STILL carry their social security cards with them, and it’s just NOT a good idea. I love the safety deposit boxes for that reason, too, best place to put all those papers and cards that are really dear to us and necessary parts of our identity.

    hehe, Gaby, yeah, I’ve been a bit under the weather, so it was nice to come out swinging again! A bit uncontrolled here, from lack of exercising the skill set, but . . . a bit o’ the old me, I think! *grin* And yeah, I waited too long, too, on the passport thing–I should have seen that one coming, but I think I still have a year or two left (better apply NOW, huh?). As to the smuggling o’ peeps, yep, that’s another thing that’s GOT to be going on like crazy across the country. Sigh.

    omg, Monty! I’m surprised that our government hasn’t thought of that . . . get the citizens and legal residents to pay for the cards, and give ’em away to the illegals. That’s RIGHT in line with their politics and position. Gaaaahhhh!! Why not? We pay for their health care, education, and imprisonment (which frankly is better quarters than they had at home). I think my head might explode, too!

    Hey Rivergirl, great comments!! Yes, you hear now and then about going for the employers in this illegal morass, but note that no one ever does. The laws are in place, after all, they just aren’t enforced. Gaaaahhh! And yes, my people came here legally, too, (and there are still limits on the number of people who can emigrate legally; no limit at all on the illegals, the more, the merrier). And here, hear! on the mini rant, I so agree with it all. I have no problem with legal immigration, but I have a huge problem with us footing the bill for every aspect of their lives. English classes? Are you kidding me? What other country in the world pays to teach illegals the language of the country they’re in illegally? Gaaaahhhh!! And that thing about the mayor being fired for racism really really makes me angry! I hate that we can’t criticise anyone who’s not upper to middle class and white these days. What? Everyone who’s not well off and white is perfect? Give me a break!! Thanks so much for these wonderful comments!! šŸ˜€

    Growling unhappily and off to watch some happy making Spongebob or something to cool my jets.

  15. Wow! You’re even cuter than I thought! I must find something else to get you heated and steamed up about. Look, Fuzzy, the ID thingy is perfectly straightforward. Anyone can have a passport, or a driving licence; they might have stolen them, or even found them in the street or something, right? But if they’ve got an ID card, they can prove that the driving licence is theirs. And if the driving licence is theirs, then the passport must be theirs. And if the passport is theirs, it must be their ID too!
    Ah, but what if they stole the ID? Hmmm. Maybe what we need then is a chip implanted in our ankle to prove that the ID is ours? Then, if the ID is OK, . . . .

  16. By the way, this is a bit thick, isn’t it, from someone who only recently confessed that her surname isn’t really Slippers?

  17. I LOVE the ankle chip implant idea, Neil! Then we can spot the phonies by their rather noticable limp. Hmmmm. Or maybe they’d find a way to get new ankles, like they got new eyes in Gattica. Okay, nevermind, bad idea about the ankle chip thing. How about we assign people to countries based on their race, accent, education, and basic worth as a human being? Come on! There MUST be some way to enforce the laws, right? And there must be some way to handle immigration; other countries seem to manage it just fine and with far less money and far fewer other resources than we do. As to the ID, it’s a step in a direction, right or wrong, and it’s not all that invasive. Um, the ankle chip or country assignment stuff . . . just silliness and fun, with an over-current of satire. Like this post. šŸ˜€

    And . . . hey! do you mean “thick” as in stupid? No fair!! Or do you mean “thick” as in richly and densely populated with impressively complex and deeply considered thoughts, opinions, and ideas?

  18. They should follow the local rules, if they don’t they can go back. It is not hard to follow. The ID is necessary, but they can also make a fake one, so I don’t know how it can control the terrorists, but I hope they find a fool proof way so they can’t cheat.

  19. Yay! Neil šŸ˜€

    Yeah, Chris, I see what you mean; I guess the hope is that there’ll be a way to have all our “papers” in one card (sounds dangerous to me, but . . . ). And yes, faking will still be going on. Dunno about a foolproof way, really, they can only try to stay one step ahead, as they try with counterfeiting cash, you know?

  20. I have no objection in principal to having to carry an ID card. Long before the current wave of fear over torrorism came along, I was saying that some sort of ID registration system would be a good idea, to help cut down on things like murder, sexual assault, other types of violent crime, as well as the more recent phenomena such as huge illegal movements of population and, of course, terrorism. I am in favour of going further than just having ID, I believe we should have ‘geno-registration’. ID that features both DNA registration and retinal scans. Make it a lot harder to get away with any serious crimes.
    Sorry, but I don’t hold with all the bleeding heart liberals crying about ‘civil liberties’. The world is going to hell in a hand-basket. The time is past to pussyfoot around. Time to get tough.

  21. Wow, I must say, Mitch, that I’m totally surprised by your position on this (and was waiting for the ironic twist that would reveal this all tongue in cheek). Personally, I would have no problem with the retinal scans and DNA registration, and I suspect that is in our future. They need to make machines cheaper, etc. first. Wow. Are you sure you’re not pulling my leg here?

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