Letter to the Editor

Letter to the Editor

The article, "Think a National ID Systems Is Too Costly? Think Again," in the Dec. 10 issue indicated that a system based on existing systems for driver's licenses, Social Security, etc., is a practical, low-cost solution to this issue. Nothing could be further from the truth.

A central database based on this information could not be used to prevent terrorist attacks. Law enforcement today works with "near-ID" issues due to the lack of an ability to positively identify an individual.

Social Security cards can be easily gotten, driver's licenses are freely given if you can pass a test, and many people in this country are not required to have either. In many cases, criminals have been known to have several Social Security numbers.

Setting up a system using such identification monitors law-abiding citizens, but does nothing to address the problem of being able to positively identify every person in the country or prevent terrorist attacks.

The key to a national ID system is the ability to positively identify every individual in this country, whether that person is an illegal immigrant, exchange student, visitor, immigrant, citizen, criminal or other.

Until the means to do so are available and in place, attempts to use existing means to positively identify people will only cause harassment of our citizenry and substantial overhead costs to support another bureaucratic system that doesn't work.

Philip Brandsey, CEO

Emerald Systems Inc., Spooner, Wis.

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