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AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREPettersson scores another winner, Canucks beat KingsYou are identified as who you say you are because, of course, you don’t need ID in order to obtain this ID. All you need is “proof” that you live in the city. This can be established, proponents say, with a utility bill. This makes one wonder how they got utilities in their names in the first place. But let’s not go down that rabbit hole. The kicker is the glaring absence of gender identification – long one of the major clues to identity. However, with our freedom to be who and whatever we say we are, gender has to go. It is no more a permanent marker than hair color or weight. The thought behind leaving out gender was to avoid awkward situations for transgender people. You can easily understand how someone presenting themselves to the world as Ralph might not want to show ID while cashing a check that identifies him as a her, or her as him – as the case may be and as the case may change. Let’s skip a full analysis of the burning question of why the birth year is on the ID. Showing a birth year could well be a source of embarrassment in our ageist society. If they are trying to prevent ID leading to embarrassment, they must get rid of it. Other than weight, and the promise to respect you in the morning, nothing is less likely to be true. So, the great and burning question is just what this ID actually identifies? Frankly, I don’t know. The outrage, if one needs outrage, is why San Francisco is taking up presumably valuable time and money to create a card, a program and a bureaucracy that accomplishes nothing? Does this card, in any meaningful way, move the ball of liberty down the field? This seems to me to be about as valuable as a photo ID of a woman in a burka. Jonathan Dobrer, a professor of comparative religion at the American Jewish University in Bel-Air, blogs at insidesocal.com/friendlyfire. Write to him by e-mail at [email protected] local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! UNSURPRISINGLY San Francisco is issuing official ID cards to anyone who lives there – legal, illegal or of uncertain status. These cards will not reference the individual’s place of birth, citizenship, legal status or (are you ready?) gender. The card will indicate a name, a birth date and it will have a photo. With this card the bearer will be able to open a bank account, get a library card and obtain municipal services. Presumably these would include Muni bus passes and BART cards, health, welfare and educational services. It is not clear if these cards would also serve to indemnify employers who hire workers so identified. Also unsurprisingly, this card is raising a lot of ire amongst people concerned about illegal immigration. My major concern, however, is that San Francisco makes the job of any satirist nearly impossible. This actual program, passed by the Board of Supervisors, is difficult to caricature. What does ID mean if basically nothing is identified?