Bill Description: Senate Bill 1268 provides no-fee identification cards, good for four years, to homeless persons. It includes a provision for a one-time replacement for a person whose card is damaged or lost.
Does it increase government redistribution of wealth?
The issue here is not the issuance of ID cards for people who are homeless. There is a reasonableness to the government having a mechanism for homeless people to get an ID card, if we are to live in a world where the government requires ID for nearly every interaction in society. That the government has created a “show us your papers” society is unfortunate, but it is not the issue here, as homeless are not relieved of such an obligation under this legislation.
Rather, the issue is the government’s having created a special class of people (in this case, the homeless), and then providing a special perk to that class in the form of a “free” ID card. This special perk has the unfortunate side effect of displacing private charity with the government’s own brand of “compassion” in the form of a free identification card. This relieves the public from the burden of providing assistance to people in need. Were this legislation to merely create a mechanism to provide an ID card to the homeless, there may be little objectionable about it.
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