Kenneth F. Belva

UK likely to get National ID cards

While the US population is mainly against national ID cards, that might not be the case in the UK.

BBC’s Nick Robinson reports that:

Most people will be issued with ID cards when they apply for what are called “second generation passports” (ie those which carry our fingerprints). It is the introduction of these which looks set to be delayed until 2012. Ministers have promised a fresh vote in Parliament on whether to make ID cards compulsory and stated that that vote would only take place once voluntary take up was complete.

A recent YouGov poll for the Telegraph showed for the first time more voters against ID cards than in favour (48% against versus 43% in favour). When the ID scheme was first proposed by the Government in 2003, YouGov found 78% supported it and just 15% were opposed.

I found the comments to Nick’s blog post a most interesting counter.

Mitch writes:

I think you’ll find ID cards were consistently unpopular pre-2001. Therefore you cannot say they are unpopular ‘for the first time’. The government regularly re-writes history, but there’s no need for you to do it as well.

Steve writes:

No-one really minds a card with name, DOB and maybe a fingerprint stored on it, but there is significant opposition to having the government keeping a file on every single citizen and tracking their activities through a system of identity checks.

This is not helped by the fact that all of the supposed benefits of this scheme simply crumble away under the slightest scrutiny. The government will be the only ones who benefit from this scheme while the taxpayer will foot the bill and bear all the risks and inconvenience.

Perhaps the US and UK generally share the same view on this issue? The US and UK do have different approachs to airport security.

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