In the US, the government now requires all citizens to have a passport in order to pass the border, even when driving into Mexico or Canada. Obtaining a passport, however, is neither free nor guaranteed. You must apply, pay an ever-increasing fee, and wait for weeks to be approved and receive it.
Recently, the State Department quietly proposed a new ‘biographical questionnaire’ in lieu of the traditional passport application. The new form requires you to provide things like:
- names, birth places, and birth dates of your extended family members
- your mother’s place of employment at the time of your birth
- whether or not your mother received pre-natal or post natal care
- the address of your mother’s physician and dates of appointments
- the address of every place you have ever lived in your entire life
- the name and address of every school you have ever attended
Most people would find it impossible to provide such information, yet the form requires that the responses ‘are true and correct’ under penalty of imprisonment.
Naturally, the privacy statement on the application also acknowledges that the responses can be shared with other departments in the government, including Homeland Security.
If this proposal passes, then US citizens will have a nearly insurmountable hurdle to obtain a passport and be able to leave the country at will. Even if it doesn’t pass, it’s a clear demonstration of what the people who run the country are thinking.
Have you reached your breaking point yet, comrades? Let me know what you think.
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