The Fingerprint Requirement... Where does it end ?

By
Real Estate Agent with New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County

The State of Texas has recently put into force the requirement that all Real Estate Licenses being renewed after January 1, 2008, be accompanied by the agent getting fingerprinted.

I must strongly protest this requirement.  How about taking blood samples ?  How about DNA samples ?  This is an intrusion... a personal invasion of my privacy.  I very much resent it.

There are some who would say "if you have nothing to hide, then what's the problem ?"  It has nothing to do with having anything to hide !  But it has everything to do with Big Government getting involved in our personal lives... one more time.

Please do not jump the gun here and think I am some sort of extremist.  I am just a nice Catholic girl from Cleveland trying to make it in the bright lights and city life of Fort Worth, Texas.  Sometimes I vote for Democrats, sometimes I vote for Republicans.  It the upcoming elections... I seem to favor Senator Joe Biden on the Democratic side, and Governor Mike Huckabee on the Republican side.

I only share this information with you to show I consider myself to be of a "main stream" political mind-set.  But... and here's the but you probably knew was coming.  The governor of Texas is a conservative Republican... Governor Rick Perry.  I thought Republicans were for less government, not more !

A very wise man... Benjamin Franklin... once said:  "The man or woman who trades freedom for security does not deserve nor will he ever get either."

How can anyone argue with a statement like his ?

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Rainmaker
213,849
Tricia Jumonville
Texas REALTOR , Agent With Horse Sense
Bradfield Properties

"There are some bad people, therefore we must all give up our basic liberties so we'll be safe!"

"There are some bad people, therefore we must all go straight to a facility after work and check in so we'll be safe!" 

I somehow don't think we're all defining the word "safe" in the same way.  Go up and read what Ben Franklin said about this very issue and think about whether it applies to you when defending these kinds of things.  I suspect that's why he said it, so that people would think about what it means as applied to themselves.  

 

December 27, 2007 07:38 AM
Rainer
129,765
Rich Dansereau
Positive Real Estate Professionals
Karen Anne and Eric, I never thought about being "black bagged" as they described it in V for Vendetta Maybe I should get a microchip so my loved ones can find me...wait a minute...if I get a microchip then anyone can find me. If I'm on a list, at least it will be me and all my subversive actions that put me there...wait a minute...I signed a petition, excersized my Rights, I didn't sign up for a list...Jeez! When wil it end! Soylent Green is people! I'm getting my ray gun and tin foil helmut now!
December 27, 2007 10:13 AM
Rainmaker
996,054
Karen Anne Stone
Fort Worth Real Estate
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County

Hi Matthew:  Yes, we do have a "Texan" in office who is doing an "unbelievable" job.  That word covers all possibilities, doesn't it ?  I understand what you are saying as far as trying to control money-laundering in Florida.  But, with the current administration's track record on both respecting our present freedoms, and in breaking current FISA law, I simply do not trust them to apply even newer invasive techniques... like fingerprinting.  How could they possibly be expect to be trusted. 

The administraton's record encourages and deserves mistrust... rather than confidence.  They cannot have it both ways, but they continue to work both sides of the law regardless.  Matthew, I understand the money-laundering problem, and I wish I had a better answer for it.  Thanks so much for sharing.  Take care...

December 27, 2007 12:15 PM
Rainmaker
996,054
Karen Anne Stone
Fort Worth Real Estate
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County
Hi Tricia:  Yes, we surely would be the "safest" if every day we reported to some sort of "control center" so that our entire environment was "controlled" for us to assure our "safety."  Hmmm... hasn't that approach been tried before ?  It sounds like something straight out of Animal Farm and 1984.  Ah, I remember now.  "All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others."  George Orwell could really see it coming, couldn't he ?  Tricia, thanks for sharing.
December 27, 2007 12:20 PM
Rainmaker
996,054
Karen Anne Stone
Fort Worth Real Estate
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County

Hi Rich:  Ah yes, the right to bear ray guns.  And the right to free speech.  I guess that goes along with my Orwellian quote above in my comment to Tricia.  We all have the right to free speech, but some of us are free-er than others.  It's just another one of those things that make us go "hmmmm."  Rich, thanks for sharing.

December 27, 2007 12:24 PM
Rainer
66,857
Dionne Morgan
Broker REALTOR ,GRI, e-PRO
Realty World Solano Realty
Karen here in California we have to submit to a 'LIVE SCAN' it is a background check by the state and the Department of Justice, We have to submit to fingerprinting and disclosures of any misdemeanor or felony charges without convictions and conviction. It is just the day and times we are living in.
December 27, 2007 01:44 PM
Rainmaker
996,054
Karen Anne Stone
Fort Worth Real Estate
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County
Dionne:  I did not know that.  As you say, it is just the day and times we are living in.  So, the more freedoms we give up... the safer we will be.  I refuse to accept that result.  Safe... that is open to debate.  Free... not at all.  Life in a cage is not free.
December 27, 2007 04:27 PM
Rainmaker
213,849
Tricia Jumonville
Texas REALTOR , Agent With Horse Sense
Bradfield Properties

And why is it "just the day and times we are living in"?  Because people said, "Oh, that's just the way it is," and didn't protest.  

Karen, I agree, we would be "safest" and "most secure" under the circumstances you outline.  Free?  Not hardly. 

 

 

December 27, 2007 03:50 PM
Rainmaker
996,054
Karen Anne Stone
Fort Worth Real Estate
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County
Hi Tricia:  I am lucky that I have never been cursed with that much passivity to say "Oh, that's just the way it is."  I know there are many who would love us to get to that point where we just resign ourselves to being controlled, but not this girl.  It all gets back to Benjamin Franklin.  Those who attempt to trade freedom for safety never get either.  Trading freedom for safety does not make one safe.  It results in the ultimate in vulnerability... because you are completely controlled.  I vote no.
December 27, 2007 04:32 PM
Rainmaker
213,849
Tricia Jumonville
Texas REALTOR , Agent With Horse Sense
Bradfield Properties

Just think, Karen, if old Ben and the rest of the Founding Fathers (and those who joined them) had had that attitude - we'd be singing God Save The Queen instead of the Star Spangled Banner.  

 

December 27, 2007 04:36 PM
Rainmaker
996,054
Karen Anne Stone
Fort Worth Real Estate
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County

Tricia:  Hmmm... The Queen on one hand, George Bush on the other, The Queen, George Bush.  What a choice.  Maybe come January 2009 we won't have to worry about making that choice any longer. <g>

By the way, the Founding Mothers didn't like trading freedom for "safety" either.

December 27, 2007 04:41 PM
Rainmaker
213,849
Tricia Jumonville
Texas REALTOR , Agent With Horse Sense
Bradfield Properties

Karen Anne, I saw this article on CNN and thought of you and this post of yours and thought you'd find it . . . well, let's just say "interesting", shall we?

 

 

February 05, 2008 10:32 PM
Rainmaker
996,054
Karen Anne Stone
Fort Worth Real Estate
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County
Hi Tricia:  Thank you for the link to the CNN article.  What a scary thing for our own country to be doing to US.  They want to build a massive database on US.  Privacy be damned !  Where do these people come up with these ideas ?  Oh yeah... from George Orwell when he wrote 1984.  We have met the enemy... and it is US.  Well... perhaps help is on the way.  I don't think either Barack or Hillary will stand for that !  Thanks so much for the link.  Take care...
February 05, 2008 11:04 PM
Rainmaker
743,334
Alan Kirkpatrick
Alan in Austin
Austin Texas Homes

Karen:

I agree with you and am equally frustrated at things like this. It won't be long before the State politicians will just pee on us to mark us as their territory. Ha.

February 05, 2008 11:23 PM
Rainmaker
996,054
Karen Anne Stone
Fort Worth Real Estate
New Home Hunters of Fort Worth and Tarrant County
Hi Alan:  Ya know what it means if they pee on you... doncha ?   "Urine" trouble !  I didn't vote for Bush, or Cheney, or Perry.  Perhaps help is on the way... someone who will be looking out for our freedoms rather than infringing on them.  Thanks for you comment.  Take care...
February 05, 2008 11:54 PM
Rainmaker
272,060
Cheryl Powell
The Powell Team- Helping YOU make the right move!
RE/MAX Executive Realty - The Powell Team

Very interesting subject Karen, I wasn't aware that real estate agents are required to provide fingerprints in any state.  It wouldn't have even occurred to me.  However, some real estate companies in our area require back ground checks on all of their agents.  I wouldn't be suprised to see North Carolina follow the trend and start requiring finger prints also. 

I take personal offense to this practice though, do they think we are all potential criminals?

February 06, 2008 04:34 PM
Rainer
64,168
Scott Smith
Gloucester & Rockport, Massachusetts
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Karen Anne: I find it rather sad that if one objects to this kind of governmental intrusion, the first line that is tossed out is "What do you have to hide?" Gee, I have nothing to hide. Maybe we should get fingerprints of people wanting to look at real estate. I mean, REALTORS aren't out there killing clients, but there are the occasional broker getting killed, robbed or raped on a showing. 

I am a certified relocation specialist with Coldwell Banker. I had to have a background check done. I was able to obtain the report. Good to see that I am indeed NOT on any watch list. I have no problem with this. I had a background check when I worked at a financial brokerage house in the 1980's. No biggie. 

February 06, 2008 06:01 PM
Rainmaker
263,330
Kim Daugherty
d + b real estate, McKinney, TX REALTOR Broker/Owner
www.RealFamilyRealEstate.com
One tip....even if you like the requirement or hate it, you still gotta do it..so do it EARLY! I tried to get my prints done in the month my license was set to expire and couldn't get them done in my city because they were booked for about a month. I had to go to a neighboring city that was a bit farther away. not a HUGE inconvenience, but just thought I'd share.
February 09, 2008 12:00 AM
Rainer
51,762
Linda Box Taylor
Your Plano, TX Realtor
Castle Connections Realty

Karen, I am good friends with our TAR field rep and the Chair of the TAR PCS Committee and everyone at TAR was strongly in favor of this requirement.  I let them know that I wasn't a fan and they seemed surprised.  We have this law because of an agent in Houston was a sex offender in another state.  And when they did the criminal background check in Texas nothing came up because he was registered out of state.  This agent didn't go anything criminal in Texas but this is what got the ball rolling for fingerprints here.  

Also, from my understanding they take your fingerprints and run you through the system now.  But just because you have your fingerprints taken doesn't stop someone from during a criminal act in the future.  I think it gives a false sense of security.  It just weeds out those you have previous records.   Which is good but I'm not a criminal and shouldn't be treated like one!!!

As you know, this requirement makes me so mad but on Thursday I'll be having my privacy taken away from me. Oh, I mean my fingerprints taken.   

February 09, 2008 09:39 AM
Rainmaker
213,849
Tricia Jumonville
Texas REALTOR , Agent With Horse Sense
Bradfield Properties

If I'd known about it in advance, I would have been telling TAR before the law was passed that I wanted them to lobby against it. 

And that's even though I had my fingerprints taken for a job application some 40 years ago.  It's the principle of the thing - that was a choice, for a law-abiding citizen, as it should be.  This is not.  

 

February 09, 2008 10:10 AM
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Rainmaker
996,054

Karen Anne Stone

Fort Worth Real Estate
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