Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

February 22, 2006

A progressive case for a national ID card

Filed under: Privacy and Security,Technology for HLS — by Christian Beckner on February 22, 2006

Douglas McGray had an interesting op-ed in the New York Times today on the issue of a national ID card:

As states get ready to comply with a law passed last May and roll out Real ID’s (think 50 flavors of enhanced drivers’ licenses that will also, for lack of anything more suitable, regulate access to airplanes, bars and banks), it might be time to consider a national identification card. Unfortunately, two camps own the conversation.

Security heavies and cultural conservatives say a national ID is necessary to protect us from Islamic terrorists and illegal immigrants. Libertarians and government-wary leftists fret about privacy. Progressives and moderates have never shown much enthusiasm for the debate. But there are lots of reasons they should find the idea of a national ID appealing.

He goes on to list ways in which a national ID card might improve health care, education, voting rights, etc., and encourages moderates and progressives to engage in this debate and help to “design a card that works.” I’m glad to read a fresh and open-minded contribution to this debate.

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Comment by William R. Cumming

February 22, 2006 @ 2:36 pm

Great Britain is planning to issue a national ID card over the next 10 years to all citizens and resident aliens. It will be interesting to note the repercussions of that policy


Comment by Jeffery Fisher

February 22, 2006 @ 10:15 pm

Save money and time, just imbed the chip at birth.

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