If you tolerate this, then your children will be next
Gordon Brown’s government took another step towards electoral oblivion this week with the announcement that non-EU students and marriage visa holders are, from November, to be made to carry gaijin cards *.
Continuing their policy of attempting to introduce unpopular measures by stealth but instead being clumsy and obvious, the government won’t initially worry about the popularity (or otherwise) of the move because those affected can’t vote. But those who CAN vote had better take note, and sharpish. Once the card is introduced in November, it’ll be very difficult to get this government to drop their broader pet project, even if it does turn out to be, in popularity terms, “a laminated poll tax”, as one Lib Dem MP referred to it.
It’s clearly the thin end of the wedge. The government has been attempting to foist ID cards on a deeply suspicious British public for years now. If this experiment on a minority with no electoral voice goes unchallenged, expect it to be rolled out to the general populace soon after.
That’s all things being equal, of course. There’s a very good chance that Brown’s government will have been shown the door long before the laminating machine’s even warmed up.
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith said the cards would allow people to “easily and securely prove their identity”.
Sounds jolly beneficial when you put it like that, which is funny because it’s nonsense. If you have planned dealings with officialdom, you’ll be carrying your passport and other documentation anyway. So when else does anyone ever have to “easily and securely prove their identity”? Only to police, and why should you have to yield up every detail of your private data, including your fingerprints, to a police officer making a routine check?
Besides, doesn’t a passport already do the same job as the proposed card? And won’t it be just as troublesome to lose an ID card as it would be to lose a passport? The fact that ID cards are clearly unnecessary for the target group should ring alarm bells and make British citizens see clearly who the real target is.
“We all want to see our borders more secure, and human trafficking, organised immigration crime, illegal working and benefit fraud tackled. ID cards for foreign nationals, in locking people to one identity, will deliver in all these areas,” she added.
No they won’t, and no one would believe that for a moment. Ms Smith gives no examples of how these problems will be solved by ID cards because it simply isn’t true. Anyone who, up until November, has been in the country with forged documents or without documentation at all will simply continue with a forged card or without a card at all. It really is as simple as that.
The people involved in crimes she lists are experts at getting around Britain’s famously lax immigration system, they operate outside it and will continue to do so. Meanwhile those who participate fully in civilised society will be regarded as criminals until they can prove they aren’t.
This is clearly not an immigration issue. It’s the first stage in the building of a national identity database by a government that has been famously untrustworthy with supposedly secure data.
Is the presumption of innocence disappearing in Britain? If so, people of Britain, do yourself a favour by doing these people a favour, and stop the government’s foul scheme while you still can.
( * Foreign residents of Japan are by law supposed to carry at all times a Certificate of Alien Registration, more colloquially referred to as a gaijin card. It’s effectively a substitute passport, containing information such as your name, address, date of birth, date of entry into the country, but NO biometric data. It should be presented to the police upon request, and any changes in those details have to be reported to the local authorities, and the card amended.
Japan has used these cards for many years as part of an immigration system far tougher and far more effective than Britain’s. A recent Japanese government attempt to foist a national ID card on its populace, unconnected to foreigners’ ID cards, was shouted down by public protest.)