By Chris Ingram
The Tampa Tribune
Published Tuesday, February 16, 2013
Last week I took my girls to the public library to check out some books, and they asked whether they could get their own library card. The librarian said they could but that their cards would be tied to my card for fines. She also said we would need to produce a birth certificate, Social Security card, report card or some similar type of “official item” with their names on it to prove their identity.
I asked her why something official is needed, and she explained that people were getting cards for kids who did not exist, and not returning items. She said this was occurring before the library started tying youth accounts to an adult’s. So why, with the accounts tied together, do I still need to provide a document with the kids’ name on it? She said she agrees it is unnecessary now but that she does not make the rules.
As countless motorists know, if you are renewing a driver’s license, you need tons of documentation to prove your identity. Stories persist of elderly people who don’t have a copy of their birth certificate (one of the documents now required) having problems getting a license renewed. If you don’t have a birth certificate, you have to request one from the state or local government of your birth. Imagine if you were 80 years old and born in a place such as New York City. Now imagine the bureaucracy you would have to endure to try to get a certified copy of your birth certificate from the city.
According to the Hillsborough County Tax Collector’s office (which issues driver’s licenses), another common problem is among people with multiple marriages who have to show name changes, marriage certificates and divorce decrees. People who were born in something other than a hospital — usually in a rural area — who never had a birth certificate face a different challenge, as does the occasional person whose records were destroyed from anomalies such as when a courthouse housing their records burns down.
Click here to read the full column in today’s Tampa Tribune.
Chris Ingram is the president and founder of 411 Communications a corporate and political communications firm, and publisher of Irreverent View. Ingram is a frequent pundit on Fox News and CNN, and has written opinion columns for the Washington Times, UPI, and National Review online. He is the Republican political analyst for Bay News 9, the only 24 hour all news channel in Florida’s largest media market. The opinions expressed here are those of author and do not represent the views of Bay News 9. E-mail him at: Chris@IrreverentView.com.
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