Home Secretary Alan Johnson has announced that plans to introduce compulsory ID cards for staff and pilots at Manchester and London airports will not now go ahead, right after the announcement that ID cards for British citizens will be voluntary - which is a bloody good thing as far as those of us here at Acid Rabbi are concerned, since it'll save us the fines we'd end up paying sooner or later due to our absolute refusal to carry a card proving our right to live in our own country.
Compulsory ID cards are widely thought to be intrusive and an infringement of civil liberties amongst the British population.
"Holding an identity card should be a personal choice for British citizens – just as it is now to obtain a passport," says Mr. Johnson, "Accordingly, I want the introduction of identity cards for all British citizens to be voluntary and I have therefore decided that identity cards issued to airside workers, planned initially at Manchester and London City airports later this year, should also be voluntary."
He also admitted that the current government have allowed the cards to become thought of as what he termed a "panacea" that could prevent terrorism. Amongst politicians at any rate, Mr. Johnson. Most of us out here amongst the electorate never saw them as anything but a severe infringement on our civil liberties. This forms yet another embarrassing climbdown for the Government, who have had to change their plans due to public opinion on several occasions recently.
However, he also stated his wish to speed up the introduction of a voluntary scheme for young adults across North West England, where the £30 cards have already been introduced in Manchester.
Hmm. ID cards (albeit voluntary) for a particular (and much maligned) demographic group in society and a fascist MEP? The North West of England could be mistaken for 1940s Bavaria were it not for the local accents.