- The Washington Times - Saturday, October 5, 2002

A national Identification card complete with biometic identifiers, such as fingerprints or retinal scans is coming. Only it's not being called that. House Resolution 4633 the Driver's License Modernization Act of 2002 would effectively create a national ID if it's passed. The bill would require each state to adopt a uniform standard for driver's licenses and link their motor vehicle databases to a central computer registry. H.R. 4633 would "amend title 23, United States Code, to establish standards for state programs for the issuance of drivers' licenses and identification cards, and for other purposes." It would make use of "encoded biometric data matching the holder of the license or card." In other words, American citizens who have never committed any crime would be subject to fingerprinting (or something similar, such as a retinal scan) and compelled to carry a card with an embedded computer chip containing reams of personal information.

What the legislation calls for is, in fact, a national ID card that every adult American would effectively be forced to carry. The only way to opt out would be to give up one's driver's license something that is not practical in an era when, outside of major cities, being able to drive is a necessity without which one cannot secure or maintain employment. And like the now-ubiquitous Social Security number which, recall, was "never to be used for identification purposes," but which is now almost impossible to conduct any business without the coming national ID/driver's license will almost certainly become an item without which one cannot open a bank account, obtain a credit card, purchase a car or home, and so on.

As Eric Skrum of the National Motorists Association put it recently: "Ultimately, anybody in any state with a card reader would be able to look up your personal driving record, credit rating, Social Security number, health information, personal address, and anything else the government would force you to divulge in order to 'voluntarily' obtain a driver's license."

They can call it whatever they want, but the end result will be the same. This bill should be rejected as being incompatible with a free society.

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