Thursday, September 21, 2006

What's in Your Wallet?

"What's in your wallet?" is a well-known credit card company's advertising slogan. I know one thing that's not in your wallet. That's your proof of citizenship. It's not there because there really is no such thing, unless you're a naturalized citizen and you have a certificate issued by the government.

I have no proof of citizenship other than my birth certificate, and I don't carry that around in my wallet. My driver's license simply has my name, address, and date of birth. So, if I were arrested on suspicion for being an illegal alien, I couldn't defend myself on the spot.

At Sherlock Investigations we get quite a few inquiries either about a person's citizenship, or their immigration status. Since INS won't cooperate with us, and there is no database listing citizens, these cases are very dificult.

I don't think I'm in favor of a national identity card, but I am in favor of noting citizenship on a person's driver's license, or state ID card. It could just be two little boxes, and the state would just check one, citizen, or non-citizen.

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