General Identification – The State of IDs in the United States

The state of identification in the United States is very different from other countries. In the United States, there is no official general identification card. Many people have fought against the idea, suggesting that a national ID card could put the country at risk. In fact, 25 states have decided not to pursue a plan to create a national ID card. Therefore, the main method of identification for Americans is the driver's license. Driver's licenses are issued by state governments. In other countries, such as Chile, governments issue national ID cards for all residents, domestic or foreign. And each ID card comes with a general identification number.

Various Types of General Identification In The U.S.A.

There are a wide number of ID types in the U.S. Aside from driver's licenses, which are state issued, the most widely used document may be the birth certificate. Birth certificates are still issued by states, but the document is the first form of identification that verifies that a person is a U.S. citizen.

Social Security cards are another method of identifying people in the U.S. Because there is a specific number that comes with each card, this number is widely used for tax and banking purposes as a national identifier.

The Passport is another form of identification in the United States. Passports are typically issued by the State Department, which is an agency of the federal government. Passports are required for travel to countries that are not attached to the United States by a border. For example, Americans traveling from Detroit to Canada only need proof of citizenship. This could be a birth certificate. On the other hand, if an American wants to visit Europe, Asia, or South America, then they will require a passport.

The Trend of Fake IDs in the United States

The U.S. drinking age of 21 has led many young adults who have entered college but are too young to drink to purchase fake ID cards in order to be able to buy alcohol and visit bars and clubs. This is a federal crime, but it is rarely pursued in court. Many students will obtain a fake drivers license, or will obtain a friend's drivers license if that friend has a similar appearance. This could cause an issue with that person's motor vehicle record. Most nations around the world have an adult drinking age of 18 or 19, but the United States drinking age was raised to 21 during the Ronald Reagan administration. The administration would only provide national highway funds to states that raised the drinking age to 21. Faced with losing millions of dollars, states opted for the funds. As a result, many young adults routinely break the law by securing fake IDs in order to have the access that many older adults have to alcoholic beverages.

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