TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Challenge to Hospitality: The ID Check in the Lobby

Re: Challenge to Hospitality: The ID Check in the Lobby

Thomas Daniel Horne (
Thu, 02 Feb 2006 20:15:21 GMT

> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: What I could never understand is how
> stores such as Walmart on the one hand want to encourage shoppers
> (although I do not personally care for the chain) yet on the other
> hand they can claim that someone is 'tresspassing' if the person comes
> in their store. Ditto with public transit. If it is a public place,
> which is claimed, then how can a member of the public who chooses to
> go inside or upon the property of the store or the transit agency get
> arrested by police for trespassing? Yet CTA does that all time; so
> does Walmart. Seems to me like Walmart and transit agency want to have
> things both ways at the same time. PAT]


Your purpose in being on private or public property must be consistent
with the express or implied invitation of the properties owners. It
makes perfect sense to me that a mall would not want skateboarders
turning there property into a skateboarding park. When a juvenile
skateboarder breaks their arm the parents may allege attractive
nuisance. Clearly posted signs and active enforcement of the owners
right to exclude that activity can serve as a strong element of the
property owners defense against such a claim for damages. In the case
of Walmart; or Mall wart as I unlovingly call them; any activity on
the premise that detracts from the shopping experience of other
shoppers is directly contrary to their ownership rights. I don't shop
Walmart because I believe they use their market power in predatory and
anticompetitive ways. That does not mean I would want to loose that
choice because various pressure groups want to be able to harass them
out of business by picketing and obstructing perfectly legal
commercial activity.

My least favorite misunderstanding of property rights is the
difference between public ownership and public access. I'm a
firefighter / rescuer by avocation. Many times I've had to turn down
demands for access to fire stations by members of the public who
demand access to the toilets or the apparatus bays on the grounds that
"it is a public building." It has not happened often but we have
sometimes needed police assistance to have belligerent citizens

You have no more right to use the toilet in a firehouse than you do to
borrow one of the tankers quartered there to fill your swimming pool
or water your lawn. The real kicker in the case of many volunteer
fire stations in the US is that they are not publicly owned at all.
They are often owned fee simple by a private corporation that is
organized under state charter to provide a public service. So when
someone tries to push past me at the door to my firehouse, after being
denied access to the toilets that are located in locker rooms that are
not open to anyone other than fire and rescue personnel, they are
committing a number of crimes including assault on a public safety
worker to deter the performance of their duty. You see one of our
duties is to secure the station and it's contents from any
unauthorized access.

The same principals apply to a public transit station or conveyance.
The express and implied invitation to the public to enter on that
premise is for the very limited purpose of buying transportation from
one place to another. You cannot set up housekeeping or a shop, You
cannot demand the use of space set aside for employees to wash and
change, you cannot put your land yacht up on the buss maintenance
shops lift to change it's oil and so forth ad nauseam. wrote:

> David wrote:

>> The advantage of the passport is that it does not have address. It
>> also does not have SSN (or a key that is easily cross-referenced to
>> SSN).

> For simple ID in cases like this the passport will work. But to say
> open a bank account I wonder if banks will accept a document that does
> not have an address and a key number. In other words, when they ask
> for your license, they record that key number and your address.

>> You can have a driver's license and a passport (I don't believe
>> you're really allowed to have the license and the non-license ID).

> True. I wanted to get a non driver's ID card for this very reason;
> plus I wanted to keep my driver's history separate. In other words,
> if a cop stops me while walking down the street, he has no need to see
> my driver's license, just some official ID. (A passport would be
> useful, unless he wanted an official address as well.) But you're
> only allowed to get a non driver's ID if you can't drive. They appear
> to be rather fussy about giving them out.

>> I'll use my passport when I know I'm going to need specific ID (new
>> job, getting a mortgage, etc.).

> My only concern would be losing your passport. Is it hard to replace
> if lost or stolen?

For that reason when I traveled internationally I would have the US
embassy in the destination country notarize a true attest copy of my
Passport so that I could leave the original in the hotel safe. The
reason I had it done at the destination embassy is that they new the
local procedures and would do it in the form that the locals would
recognize. That being said some places will except nothing but the
original. I once had to find a different hotel when the hotel I had
reservations with insisted that they needed to hold my passport as
surety for my payment. I was not willing to have the passport out of
my control in that particular country.

-- Tom Horne

"people willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve
neither and will lose both" Benjamin Franklin

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