Friday, May 10, 2019

A real man needs a ‘REAL ID’ driver’s license. Doesn’t he?



     A letter arrived from the office of Jesse White, Secretary of State.
     “Congratulations!” it began. “As a safe driver, you are currently eligible to renew your driver’s license via Internet, phone or mail, and receive your new driver’s license in the mail.”
     I assumed this meant I could renew my driver’s license via internet, phone or mail, without bringing myself bodily to the license bureau, not one of life’s peak experiences. I remarked upon this to my wife.
     “Oh sure,” she replied. “You could do that. If you were the type of man who would be satisfied with an ordinary driver’s license.”
     I raised an eyebrow, interrogatively.
     But, she continued, if I want the new super duper driver’s license, the “REAL ID” as it is called — which would, under tighter Homeland Security rules, allow a real man such as myself to board a plane to Cleveland without bringing along a passport as if I were flying to Tunisia — I would still need to apply in person.
     Apply in person, I learned during the study that followed, along with a sheaf of supplemental documentation. And thus is our nation made secure.
     What sort of documentation? My passport, for starters, plus my old driver’s license or other ID showing my signature, plus two bills to prove my home address is recognized by the post office and, the cherry on top, my Social Security card. 


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17 comments:

  1. I lost my driver's license several years ago and had to start from scratch to get a new one. I was totally lost when I needed to bring an official document of some kind with my signature. The only thing I could think of was a cancelled check. I do all my banking online and don't get a physical statement with cancelled checks, plus I probably hadn't written a check in ages. It took an hour to go online, find find a statement with a check, and print it as proof of my signature. Fortunately, as you said, Jesse White has done a great job at streamlining the Secretary of State's office. I no longer prefer to stick my head in the oven rather than go to the Secretary of State's office.

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  2. And if one doesn't have a passport, a birth certificate to secure one of those ID's, I believe.

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    1. With a marriage certificate if you changed your name.

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    2. If you were married...and divorced...and remarried,,,and divorced...and remarried...you need documentation for EACH of those...in other words, FIVE official, notarized documents, and they had better have a RAISED and embossed state seal on EACH one, or the paper-pushers will send you away. Don't know if that's true in Illinois, but here in Ahia, my neighbors have been bitching about that sort of thing happening to them at the DMV.

      The state driver's license has now become the equivalent of the national ID that folks were always so paranoid about, in a kinder and gentler era. Today you'll need it to fly domestically? Really? Tomorrow you will need it to cross state lines on America's highways, and the day after that you'll need it at the so-called "sobriety checkpoints" when you travel from one side of your city to the other. Especially if Orangy Boy wins next year. Don't say you weren't warned.

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  3. The SOS, office has become so much more efficient that I'm amazed you had to wait an hour. I don't think I've spent more than 15 minutes there in recent years. I wonder if it's the REAL ID processing that's gumming up the works.

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  4. Jesse White improving the SOS office?
    Hahaha! What a joke!
    Sell a car & try to transfer your old plates to a new car. You must see at least four different people in different places around the building, with no single person knowing exactly what you're supposed to do.
    Illinois's DMV facilities are a pathetic joke, filled with dozens & dozens of useless employees pretending to work, all the while counting down to when they can get their overinflated pensions with the huge compounding COLA every year when they finally retire to Florida & not have to pay Illinois taxes on those obscenely high pensions!

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    1. During Jesse Whites' years in office the service at SOS facilities has improved by leaps and bounds. If occasionally you hit a snag, BooHoo, that's life. What was once a nightmare is now a minor inconvenience. While you were waiting, Clark you should have noticed the amount of citizens moving efficiently through the system. The dozens of employees you saw pretending to work never seem to be there on any of my many visits over the years. Bad attitude or bad memory, get over it.

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    2. Exactly what no work job do you have, courtesy of Jesse White?

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    3. The only government jobs I've held were part time package sorting for the Post Office at O'Hare in high school and with the U. S. Navy. What happened to you that you don't notice improved gov't service because you had one disappointing experience?

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  5. I'm just a little miffed that I won't be able to renew by mail, as I have the last several times, if I want one of those real ID things. Then again, I'm advancing in age and they'd probably call me in anyway, just to make sure I haven't turned into Mr. Magoo.

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    1. In 2017 I had to go in due to advanced age. I drove over to the Bridgeview office in the middle of the day only to find a block-long line outside. I went back the day after an hour before the office opened, only to discover when the doors opened that seniors got to go to the head of the line. All went smoothly after that until the examiner took exception to my rolling stops, but passed me nevertheless.

      john

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    2. Last time I had to go to the SOS office, I went late in the day - maybe 4pm. This is at a city facility that is always mobbed. I was in and out in less than 10 minutes. I guess everyone shows up early, and most are cleared out by late afternoon.

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  6. Good grief, Clark St, which facility do you attend? That does make a difference.
    I drive over to the Lockport office. It is tiny. And like Coeys experience, usually an in and out visit. Even the Joliet office wasnt horrible. I think maybe the larger the customer base, the more exasperating it is for all concerned.

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    1. Elston Ave., although Deerfield is even worse, but doesn't offer a full range of services, such as what I went through to transfer plates to a new car.

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  7. I went yesterday to get my license renewed at the quite large facility near Lake Zurich. No complaints. An efficient process. No evidence of useless employees pretending to work. A courteous and conscientious driving examiner. My only real beef is that after a certain age you have to renew every year.

    The check-in clerk informed me that I could apply to have the work "veteran" embossed on my license and provided me with the forms I would have to take to a Veteran Administration office to get that authorized. I asked what the benefits were and he said none that he knew of. I returned the forms so he could offer them to the next hero of foreign wars he comes across.

    Re yesterday's column, I notice in today's paper that the Reverend Farrakhan has clarified his view of the Hebraic menace. Nice to know that not all Jews are bad, but how do I tell which of my Jewish friends are Satanic?

    Tom

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    1. If you sniff brimstone, beware.

      Of course, being well-to-do might be a warning sign also. Poor Jews are saints, rich ones satans, while middle class Jews probably don't exist in Farrakhan's lexicon.


      john

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  8. My driver license expired few days ago and I wasn't given a choice, the letter I received said that I need to get the "Real ID". I shlept all the paperwork they asked for to the Deerfield branch but they never asked for any of it. Other people ahead of me were sent back to bring the missing paperwork so maybe it's random.

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