Identification in America,

as it stands in 2019

Under Construction



Table Of Contents

  1. Preface
  2. Chapter 1
    1. Section 1
    2. Section 2
    3. Section 3
    4. Section 4
    5. Section 5
    6. Section 6
    7. Section 7
  3. Chapter 2
    1. Section 1
    2. Section 2
    3. Section 3
    4. Section 4
    5. Section 5
    6. Section 6
    7. Section 7
  4. Chapter 3
    1. Section 1
    2. Section 2
  5. Chapter 4
    1. Section 1
    2. Section 2
    3. Section 3
  6. Chapter 5


A goal of this paper is to reach a deep understanding of identification; both in a philosophical and a legal sense. The picture of the world we are handed appears to have some inconsistencies. Even the most casual student of American history is often surprised at the contrast between the pastoral society of the 1850s and the paranoid anti-communist world of the 1950s. And it gets even more confusing when in a discussion with any type of law enforcement, government employee, or politicians. They confirm our fears, explain why it has to be this way, and leave us feeling uneasy.

7 “Ask, and you will receive. Search, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened for you. 8 Everyone who asks will receive. The one who searches will find, and for the one who knocks, the door will be opened.

Matthew 7:7,8

Names of God Bible (NOG)

So if they aren't going to satisfy my confusion, then it's time to dig deep for some real answers. Now of course the world (as usual) is more complex then this. There are many aspects to the subject that I intend to explore:

  • Is it unconstitutional to require I.D. for an activity?
  • Why is it so much more important to have a piece paper/plastic rather than people who would vouch for us?
  • Have we signed away our rights by using this system?
  • What do we not know that we should know?
  • Is there a way around all of this?
  • Is there a way to simplify all of this?

Technical Notes

As fun and easy as static site generators are I decided it's better to back to the basics. By writing this in pure html/css I can edit it from anywhere. There are only 2 files that contain all of my hard work. One if you don't mind it looking ugly.

Time to test some hilighting stuff: First we begin with red, then it continues to the green, then to a splash of orange, of course yellow, and lastly some blue.

Historical Identification

Chapter 1

Sec. 1, In A State Of Nature

The memory of a person. Despite it often being clear who did an action, the ability to hold that person accountable is entirely dependant on one's memory. And/or their ability to describe someone's face to others.

Sec. 2, Native Americans

Clothing choices. Bands on arrows.

Sec. 3, Ancient Rome

Census Records, wooden diptych, tribal records, public records for Cursus honorem.

Sec. 4, Medieval Europe

Letters patent. Family trees & crests. Special designations.

Sec. 5, Colonial England, circa 1750

Traveling among colonies as a American subject? Did an American need ID to buy goods from the homeland?

Sec. 6, Early America, circa '77-'27

Sec. 7, Twentieth Century

Mandatory passports at the border of our country were unheard of — during peacetime — until 1941. English Common Law still governed nearly all of the subjects related to identification. Those who didn't own much property would've had very few legal papers to safeguard. It's hard to get a strong feeling of how this reality would have been to live through, but on its face it sounds vastly superior to the reality we currently live.

The most distinguished aspect of this century is the steady encroachment of new divisions, departments, and agencies upon our private lives. It does appear that early on in this process many of these agencies offered their services voluntarily, and over the years these "suggested" services have become enforced by statutes. I don't believe that wild speculation is all that useful, however this clearly raises a question of original intent.

Driver's Licenses and Social Security Numbers are the most extreme examples. In a span of 50 years (about 2 generations) they went from non-existent, to cutting edge, to widely used, to lawfully enforced. But are they lawful?

Dissecting N.C. Identification

Chapter 2

Sec. 1, Definitions

Resident (Black's, 9th)
n. (15c) 1. A person who lives in a particular place. 2. A person who has a home in a particular place. • In sense 2, a resident is not necessarily either a citizen or a domiciliary.
n. (l4c) 1. A person who, by either birth or naturalization, is a member of a political community, owing allegiance to the community and being entitled to enjoy all its civil rights and protections; a member ofthe civil state, entitled to all its privileges.
n. (1845) A person who resides in a particular place with the intention of making it a principal place of abode; one who is domiciled in a particular jurisdiction.
State (NCGS Chap. 20)
A state, territory, or possession of the United States, District of Columbia, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, a province of Canada, or the Sovereign Nation of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians with tribal lands, as defined in 18 U.S.C. § 1151, located within the boundaries of the State of North Carolina. For provisions in this Chapter that apply to commercial drivers licenses, "state" means a state of the United States and the District of Columbia.

Sec. 2, Eligibility

A person who is a resident of this State is eligible for a special identification card.

To me that is very simple and plain language. However...

State I.D.

When applying for an ID card for the first time, an individual must visit an NCDMV driver license office with the following documents:
  1. One document proving age and identity
  2. A Social Security card
  3. U.S. citizens, a document proving residency
  4. Non-U.S. citizens, a document indicating legal presence

Technically the state can lawfully get away with this, but it's certainly pushing the limits. However going up to a higher level, the statute is designed to control the behaviour of NC's DMV. And, as we've seen, 'resident' is a purposefully generic term. They could have used the terms domiciliary (one who is domiciled) or citizen. The question of whether or not these statutes exist as constitutional state law or as an extension of the corporate "State of North Carolina" is very much at the top of my mind. However the fact remains that this entity (along with its siblings) have created, instituted, and maintained the system which is currently limiting my activity in the world. So if there is a way to 'play nice' I ought to take it.

Black's definition of eligible is Fit and proper to be selected or to receive a benefit. So how can the state legally deny anyone who has proof of residence? Because according to their own language the only requirement is to be one who resides in this state. Even foreigners can and have gotten an ID, which means this interpretation is certainly used. So why is it so hard to simply opt out of providing the number? Yes that is a rhetorical question.

Sec. 3, Tickling The Dragon's Tail

In late March I sent a letter to NC's Commissioner of the DMV and received a response from the Attorney General's office.

RE: Request for Special Identification Card

Dear Mr. ___:

This letter is in response to your March 28, 2019, letter addressed to DMV Commissioner Jessup. Members of the Attorney General's staff are only authorized to provide legal opinions or advice to public officials. Therefore, I cannot provide you with legal advice or opinions with regard to your inquiry.

With that being said, it is my understanding from your letter that you are concerned that the Division has been unable to accommodate your request for an identification card. You correctly cite North Carolina's General Statute § 20-37.7(a), which states: "Eligibility..." However, per the same Statute § 20-37.7(b), "a person must complete the application form used to obtain a driver's license" and submit said application to the DMV. Upon receipt of this completed application, the DMV will process your request, including any accompanying documentation, to ascertain if all requirements are met before issuing you an identification card. For your convenience, I have included the form you need to complete and submit.

In addition, as stated in your letter, you "will be traveling much more often" due to changes in your work. Per the same Statute you have cited, "a special identification card, shall be similar in size, shape, and design to a drivers license, but shall clearly state that it does not entitle the person to whom it is issued to operate a motor vehicle." N.C. Gen. Stat. § 20-37.7(c). To obtain a North Carolina driver license for the first time, an individual must be at least 18 years old and apply in person at an N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles driver license office. Please be advised that you are expected to obey all laws of the State of North Carolina and its cities and counties, including the Motor Vehicle Laws.

I hope that this answers your inquiry, and if you have further questions, feel free to contact the North Carolina DMV at 919-715-7000.

This letter is intended for informational purposes only and has not been reviewed or adopted as an opinion of the Attorney General.

Sincerely yours,

Jonathan J. Evans

Assistant Attorney General

I do believe that in my initial letter I was careful to give the impression of a middle-of-nowhere guy who was rather clueless of the law, but not stupid. So I find it interesting that Mr. Evans made it a point to talk about the legality of driving without a license. I have a feeling that the word "travel" may have triggered it, as did the idea that everyone "needs" a license to get around these days.

The legal entity known as the "State of North Carolina" apparently has its own counties and its own cities. Whatever deceptions are being done with the word-magick they use is definitely very significant. However the goal here is to access the jurisdiction of the Organic/Original/True/Constitutional state of North Carolina.

I'm not exactly surprised by this response. It's all to be expected, the one good thing is that the choice of words used here does give me a little more clarity on the relationship between these Statutes and individuals.

Sec. 4, 21ST-Century, North Carolina Statue Law

N.C.G.S. Chap. 20, Article 2B.

Sec. 7, Uses For I.D

Buying alcohol/opium/firearms/houses/mail-order, traveling, doing an activity for hire (freelance), common labour, banking, rent home/equipment, adoption, hotel, to hunt, communicate.

Cases For Identification

Chapter 3

Sec. 1, Precedents

Registration with government has always been voluntary. My assertion is that that has never changed. Simply people's perception of what is and isn't voluntary, and a few well placed lies from individuals of authority.

Identification Is Hearsay.

Sec. 2, Passport As A Right

It is the duty of a government to protect its people. And in a time of peace people have every right to peacefully travel without a passport. Unfortunately our national government has been in an extended state of national emergency since the second world war.

National Emergency. It's really a clever thing. And so far has worked beautifully on our mostly ignorant population. Luckily for us context is significant. A case can certainly be made that this application of the "National Emergency" has been inconsistent and is often unfounded. After all, what is a National Emergency when thousands of the Nation's middle class are off taking vacations?

Practical Remedy

Chapter 4

Sec. 1, Enumeration Of Conflicts

Buying age restricted items. Confrontation with police while traveling in public. Buying firearms. Staying at hotel. Renting a car. Banking. Getting a typical job. Pickup at post office. Dealing with notary. Travel Abroad.

Sec. 2, Applying For Help From State Gov't

There are two issues at play here. 1. Obtaining a widely recognized I.D. that acts as both Common Law and Statute-based proof of Identification. 2. Getting the Gov't to protect me abroad. I don't know to what extent a passport is a right or not. In a casual sense, it is most certainly the duty of our Gov't to protect us both within and without its borders. In a technical sense...not so sure.

A preliminary plan. First build as strong a base as I can. Judicial opinions, historical precedents (both old and recent), logical proofs,

Sec. 3, The Test

N.C.G.S. 18B-302

Buy alcohol at a store/restaurant that requires an I.D. using a form of I.D. that didn't require a birth certificate or Social Security number to obtain. N.C. allows the use of a Driver's License, Special Identification Card, Passport, Military Identification Card. and some places may accept a foreign identification card. A court ordered ID Card or Passport would be my silver bullet.

Digging Through Sources

Plain Notes

Twain, Mark. The Innocents Abroad. Hartford, American Publishing Company, 1869.

"They keep up the passport system here, but so they do in Turkey. This shows that the Papal States are as far advanced as Turkey."

It's an interesting comment here. Whether or not this is fiction there is bound to be a story behind this clear prejudice of the times.

Every body in Constantinople warned us to be very careful about our passports, see that they were strictly ‘en regle’, and never to mislay them for a moment: and they told us of numerous instances of Englishmen and others who were delayed days, weeks, and even months, in Sebastopol, on account of trifling informalities in their passports, and for which they were not to blame.

Koffler, Joseph H. Common Law Pleading, Handbook Of. 1969.

Names and how they're used seems to be very ingraned into the law of the many states. The plaintiff and defendant must be named in the most proper way. The names that they use and were given at birth. Whereas the various witnesses and other persons mentioned in the case may be described using nicknames or the most specific description available.

Harris, George E. Law of Identification, A Treatise. Albany, H.B. Parsons, 1892. § 2.

The agreement of a person's name, residence, and occupation isn't absolute proof that he is the person described, however it is enough evidence to put the burden of proof on himself rather than the plaintiff.

Garner. Black's Law Dictionary. Tenth Edition. 2009.

identity: "Sameness in essential attributes; the condition of being the very same thing as has been described or asserted.

hotchpot: 1. The blending of items of property to secure equality of division, esp. as practiced either in cases of divorce or in cases in which advancements of an intestate's property must be made up to the estate by a contribution or by an accounting. 2. In a community-property state, the property that falls within the community estate.