Can they hold your ID?

In the last two weeks I was twice asked to hand over my driver’s license…

In the last two weeks I was twice asked to hand over my driver’s license. The first was at a local university library. This library only allows members of the university to enter the facility, but you are allowed to bring a guest. I was a guest. In the past they’ve asked for my driver’s license to hold while I was in the building, as insurance that I would return to get it back. Things have changed now, and they make a photocopy of your driver’s license, and hold that, and then give it back to you when you leave.

To be fair, they did ask for another form of ID. In fact, they seemed rather irate that I did not have another form of ID. Do most people have more than one form of ID? If you’re not a student, or work in some huge corporation, do you?

Anyway, the guy at the library desk mumbled on about how some people (liberals, I presume) were all “up in arms” about having to surrender their driver’s licenses (and with identity theft nowadays, who can blame them?) He reluctantly took my driver’s license and made a copy of it, and let me in. When I left the library, I was given the photocopy that I was now tasked with destroying.

While at a local department store, we wanted to use their scanner to choose items for our registry, and again, they asked to hold my driver’s license (so we wouldn’t run off with the scanning gun.) I assume this is a common practice at many places, which begs the question, is this legal? Is it legal in Wisconsin? What about other states? It may be the same situation where you are not required to give out your social security number to anyone except the government, but good luck trying to get a job or anything else in this country without revealing it to organizations along the way.

I’m half-tempted to make a fake ID, actually, it would be a “real ID” for the next time I go to the library. It will have all of my information on it, but will be from my own organization, not from the State of Wisconsin. Think they’ll let me in?

1 reply on “Can they hold your ID?”

I don’t know if it is legal to hold ID’s, but if you hang out at places like pool halls, they often take your ID or a credit card when they give you the pool balls. Also, the only ID that routinely carry with me is my driver’s license. Sometimes I have my Sam’s Club ID that has a picture. If you decide to make up some “real” ID’s for, say “Pete’s Club, a division of Fred’s Worldwide”, please make me one up as well.

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