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Clarke Wants Compulsory Fingerprinting

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According to this article, from The Guardian today, our Home Secretary, Charles Clarke wants the EU to adopt a plan for compulsory fingerprinting of all EU citizens who already carry id cards:

“A really significant amount of travel within Europe is done not on a passport but on an identity card which is just a piece of cardboard with a photograph attached. It is a weak link. We need to have a common standard.”

The spokesman stressed, however, that the measure would not mean the EU was compelling those countries which do not have ID cards to adopt them.

Britain is to start introducing “biometric” passports from next year; all applicants will have to go to one of 70 new centres to be fingerprinted and have their face “scanned.” In December the EU decided that all passport holders, visitors and foreign resident nationals should be fingerprinted.

I object to being treated like some sort of criminal, by having my face scanned, and fingerprints taken the state are automatically asuming that I could potentially be some sort of criminal. That just is not the right way to go about things. And besides, Clarke has already acknowledged that his planned ID scheme wouldn’t have prevented last Thursday’s terrorist attacks anyway, so why are they continuing to press ahead with these pointless measures?

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  • I object to being treated like a criminal also. I have already had my fingerprints taken at work.

    However, the DNA screen was how they caught the BTK killer. So I can see it both ways.

  • Nancy

    This IS a hard one, because on one hand, it does help track down & convict real criminals; on the other, it is far too much of a temptation to corrupt administrations (like the Bush/Rove cartel) to use it to silence critics.

  • To be honest with you parker, the problem I have with these databses (which is what Clarke is also suggesting) is that they could either be misused or hacked into.

    Either way, I don’t particularly like the implications of this.

  • This is the thing isn’t it Nancy. We all are very well aware of the influence corporations have with governments. My feeling is that such databases being proposed could potentially be abused by those in power, and their corporate friends.

  • Nancy

    The pentagon is already violating the law in regard to the government keeping files on citizens, in ‘outsourcing’ its targeted recruitment lists to private corporations. I noticed in all the stories & statements regarding this, that both pentagon & corporate sources were very careful NOT to say there was any agreement or policy that this for-profit corporation would not or could not use, sell, lease, rent, or otherwise give out this very personal information of millions of kids. And it would seem government has already violated its own laws in allowing marketing companies & other profit corporations access to private data banks of citizens. Not to mention the profit corporations that have been quietly accumulating data on everyone all along anyway, in the name of “credit” – most of which have now been hacked, stolen, sold, or lost anyway. So I end up asking, what difference could it possibly make now? You & I are already on file, in the lowest possible common data bank, a direct mail marketing file. Would it be any worse to be on file w/the FBI, especially since my worst crime to date has been a speeding ticket?

  • I’ve heard the argument many times before Nancy, about data already being available to authorities. Well, that’s certainly true, if authorities wished, they could already find out whatever they wanted to about us all.

    In that case, what is the point of yet another form of identification, or piece of data about us?

    I really don’t see the point. Whichever way I look at it, the scheme seems either pointless, wasteful or potentially open to abuse.

  • Nancy

    Maybe I’m just stupid, but I fail to understand how for-profit companies can know so much about us, even track us down to our physical locations, and the police & FBI remain clueless.

  • cool chicks

    were doing a school project on this and we need more articles on this piece!!is there any other articles related to this suject??by the way, (this doesnt really affect us)but we dont think the EU should adopt this new plan because it stinks.People shouldnt be treated like criminals!!