So, we're rebelling against the coming NID (national ID) ... what exactly does that mean? To me, it means a helluva lot more than saying, "Sign me up!" and posting a cool graphic on one's web site, and then going back to the daily trudge of one's life. The U.S. Congress and President Bush have, in making the Real ID Act law, thoroughly gutted liberty in this country -- to say nothing of privacy.
While the law will not come into full effect until 2008 (at present writing), look for elements of it to start being implemented much sooner. Don't count on the state governments to continue their tepid protestations -- after all, their primary concern is primarily that Real ID is an unfunded mandate. If the federal government starts tossing them money, I predict most states' politicians will be only too happy to comply.
If we want to keep this country free of national IDs that are required for any travel within the country, or to transact any
sort of business, we, the people
must take action against it. How do we do that?
There are many ways. I'll be exploring them in more depth in the future, but for now, it's helpful to think about the possibilities. First, there's loud, public opposition, such as this web site and its affiliated Rebels; there's also quiet, under-the-radar screen activism possibilities; others may choose to work within the system to bring it down; and last, others may choose education as their form of activism -- writing about what's coming, and why it's wrong, so that more people understand what's at stake and may become moved to become activists themselves. (For a more fully-fleshed take on three of these four ideas, see Claire Wolfe's book The Freedom Outlaw's Handbook
[the link goes to my review of it], and The Claire Files Forum
for an ongoing discussion of these methods and much more.)
Then, think about how important this is to you. Are you willing to die
rather than carry a NID? Are you willing to radically restructure your life so that you can live outside the "official" U.S. system -- possibly foregoing the nice house, a traditional job, banking and credit as you know it, relatively free travel (although it bears mentioning that commercial airlines already require a photo ID to board a plane, claiming that some law requires that while not bringing forth a copy of the law for individuals to see)?
Think about others who might be affected by your decision -- spouse, children, elderly family members, friends. Are they willing to bear some (perhaps a lot) of unpleasant consequences of your chosen course? Are you willing to bear the loss of support from some, maybe all, of these people in your life? (You'll almost certainly meet new friends, but that can be small consolation at best if your marriage ends over your activism.)
If, after pondering these questions, all you're willing to do right now is post an anti-NID graphic on your web site, your support is still welcome. Every voice raised in opposition is important. I recommend that you choose from the graphics from the Liberty Round Table's No-NID project
and link back to it.
For those of you who are willing to take further action, this is the place to be. We'll be exploring these questions, and many more related to them, as we go. We're just getting started here -- and your input is welcome.