VIA| A drivers license is one of the most important identification tools we have in America. Replete with our pertinent information and our photo, anything of a sensitive nature that requires confirming our physical identity usually also involves checking our drivers license (except, of course, voting).
Now, in the name of political correctness, one of our states wants to do away with this protection by allowing religious garments in drivers license photos. This can include headdresses or scarves — material that would conceal part of the head or face that would ordinarily not be allowed under law.
While most religious gear would still leave the ability to identify the subject at some level, the most concealing of Muslim religious garb for females — the burqa — would leave the entire head and face covered.
“While hats or head coverings are generally prohibited from being worn in photographs used on Illinois drivers licenses and identification cards, customers may be photographed while wearing established religious head coverings,” reads a flier distributed to state employees at the Illinois Department of Motor Vehicles. “Photographs increase public safety.”
Illinois DMV Deputy Press Secretary Henry Haupt confirmed to reporters that this would include the burqa and veil, as well as other religious coverings worn by Muslims and Sikhs.
“What we’re doing was always allowed… but what we want to ensure is that the public’s aware of them because we were told that some individuals were unaware that they could have their photo taken for the drivers [sic] license wearing them [religious head coverings],” Haupt said.
“We’re always mindful of the fact that we want to communicate well with the public.” (H/T Mad World News)
They’re not so mindful, however, about the right of law enforcement and other agencies to know the identity of the person that they’re dealing with.
That’s one of the points of a drivers license, after all. It’s all about identification and safety. It has nothing to do with religious sensitivities, and the safety of Americans oughtn’t be compromised because of a silly experiment in political correctness.