Archive for June, 2005

Follow up on Passports

Sunday, June 12th, 2005

I was skimming the ABC site and the bar may have been right re ABC their FAQ states:

Q. 74. What is documentary evidence of age and identity?

A. To be suitable as evidence for a defense, the identification card must be issued by a governmental agency and have a current description and a picture of the person presenting it which reasonably describes the person as to date of birth weight, height, sex and color of eyes and hair. No defense will exist if the card has obviously been altered or has expired. A registration certificate issued under the Federal Selective Service Act is no longer considered documentary evidence of age, identity and date of birth. (Section 25660)

Passports as Identification

Saturday, June 11th, 2005

Shouldn’t a US Passport be concerned acceptable ID for pretty much everything in the US? I recently lost my drivers license and have not had a chance to go down to the DMV and request a new one. Ya, I’m a slacker, but thats not the point.

Not having my CA Drivers License on me I’ve been carrying around my US Passport as identification. About 75% of the time everything is great people see the passport and don’t mind. Unfortunately one or two business have been complete jackasses about it and refuse to accept my passport as I.D.

Usually these business are bars and need to verify my age before they let me in. My main issue with this is that they try to blame it on everyone under the sun and refuse to admit that they either don’t know what a passport looks like or just do not want to accept it. Usually they try to claim its illegal for them to accept and say things like “the LAPD busted us last week for accepting passports” or “Its against ABC regulations to accept passports as IDs”.

Well I checked with the LAPD and those are all complete lies. Although any private establishment can make their own decisions as to what to accept, legally any government issued ID with your photo, name and age are acceptable as ID when ordering an alcoholic beverage.

My question is what would they do if I were an exchange student or a tourist from another country? What do I do if I just don’t own a CA ID or Drivers license? There is no law in the US yet that requires I have any specific form of ID. Obviously there are laws which require you to show ID before completing certain transactions, they just don’t specify what form of identification is acceptable.

Back to the foreigner argument, if I’m a student from Argentina and hanging out in Westwood while on an exchange program how are they going to get me to produce a CA DMV issues drivers license? Most likely the only ID I’ll be carrying is my passport or some other foreign ID. Does that mean foreigners can’t buy liquor? Doesn’t seem right.

Anyways, I guess the reason I’m ranting is because I just hate being lied to. Just tell it to me straight and I’ll leave happily and give my business to someone else. Neither of us gains anything through lies.

Another thing to consider is that I can go to downtown LA and buy a realistic Drivers licensee or California ID for somewhere around $100. I know of nowhere that sells fake US passports.