Tuesday, August 29, 2006

a sexist errand

yesterday morning, my mother calls me in tears with panic in her voice."molly" she says "i really hope you can help me. i went to renew my driver's license and they wouldnt let me because my birth certificate and SS card names dont match. i tried to explain to them, and its not like i am just now applying for a Jersey license-i mean its been eight years ive lived here! but these are the new homeland security regulations- there are no exceptions, and my license is up on thursday and i called the cleveland court house but it will take two to four weeks to get here so..."

she continued on "molly, i dont know why i am so upset, i mean, i know there went our civil rights and that makes me mad, but still..."

"mum" i said "because its also sexist" and this has always been an issue for me. here at 29 years old, i have had three different last names (my dad, then my stepdads, then my mom's grandmothers maiden name after her second divorce), and i have never been married so this name thing has always been an issue for me, but this...

we now have govenment policies that are meant to'catch terrorists' but really are going to cause hours of extra work for WOMEN. my friend jeff, who changed his name to his wife's when he got married then back to his birth name after divorce, pointed out that no one even thinks to ask if he has ever had a different name.

as for me, i have always needed to take multiple papers anyhow, as my birth name is hoch but my social security card, like my mother's, says danzinger...luckily i can leave the stevens phase out, but not so for my mum.

so i am off to the court house to get both her marriage certificates so i can overnight them to her so she doesnt have to drive illegally (though i told her it really isnt that big of a deal, and maybe even a little bit of a rush to drive illegally) this morning catching the rapid for 3.50 round trip bercause all women with name changes are now national security threats...

Song of the day: i am woman-helen reddy


Anonymous said...

And your Mom totally appreciates it!

Gloria Ferris said...

When I married Tim, a woman I worked with told me that I needed to go to the Social Security Office and change my name. So one lunch hour she and I trudged down to the social security office to change my name. The nice lady at the social security office said oh we don't require that any more because you will always have the same social security number no matter what your name.

Five years ago, I received a nasty letter from the IRS telling me that I was filing fraudulent tax returns because my name didn't match my social security number, and if I didn't correct it immediately I would be subject to interest and penalties and maybe even imprisonment.

So down I trudged to the Social Security office to change my name on my card. Something I wanted to do twenty years earlier and was told no.

Go figure!

molly said...

sounds like you had a good friend a bad soial security employee and a male irs worker?

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