As I continued to struggle over a suitable topic, the mail arrived. In the middle of the stack was something from the government. And, lo and behold, what that little envelope contained would be my salvation. Who among us doesn’t have something to say about the government at one time or another? Just look at our current presidential primary race on both sides of the political spectrum. Talk about ‘you can’t make this stuff up’.
But back to my point. My new driver’s license was here. What they call an enhanced version which is, and I quote… “A Federally approved document that allows you to re-enter the US when traveling by land or sea from Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and the Caribbean…” This is all part of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative. Michigan, where I live, is bordered on two sides by Canada. A trip to the Caribbean is, hopefully, in my future. Having the enhanced license is a pleasant convenience. Nice that the government would do something to make travel easier for its citizens. Especially without what seems to be the bureaucratic battle cry of “You’re too stupid to take care of yourself, so let me do it for you.” Refreshing for a change.
I opened the official looking document, pulled out the small plastic card and frowned at the picture. (Do I really look like that? I thought my hair was behaving better that day.) Oh well. Per the attached instructions, I checked to make sure all of the printed information was accurate. My name was spelled right, my address was correct. No retakes for me unless I wanted to pay, again, for it. Included in the packet was a small sleeve. Printing on its face informed me – “This radio frequency protection sleeve shields your enhanced driver’s license or State ID card from unauthorized Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) readers.” Double nice. All of this valuable information and convenience came from my government, right?
I’m all for other conveniences of modern society that do things for me as well. Lights that sense your presence and flip on. Electronic devices that, once they know where you are and want to go, talk you through the maze of highways and traffic to get you there. (This one is huge in my directionally challenged world.) Then there are toilets that know when you’re finished and flush for you. I’m okay with all of that, and it seemed at long last, the government had gotten on board with some of these hands off modern conveniences.
Then I turned my RFID protection sleeve over and was presented with this nifty little bit of additional printed instruction. “When you need to access your enhanced driver’s license or state ID card, remove it from this protective sleeve.” Well, duh! You think? I may not have thought to do that on my own. Take it out of the protective sleeve, huh? What a concept. Further information instructed me to, “Keep the card in its sleeve when not in use.” Another flash of insight I might not have thought about if left to my own devices.
Geez Louise! Didn’t we talk here a few days ago about authors being asked/told by editors and publishers to dumb down our writing for an up and coming audience who wants/expects to be spoon fed and directed and coddled? Guess the dumb it down concept isn’t limited to authors and books and entertainment and such.
It’s already a wide spread epidemic.
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