Why the Gem State says no to smiling when taking your picture for your new Idaho Driver's License.  Believe it or not, the Feds have something to do with it.     Recently I had the wonderful opportunity to visit the Treasure Valley Department of Motor Vehicles.  After seven years, my license had finally expired and it was time to get a new one.  I was fond of my old picture that showed me with scowl.  Anyone can smile, but everyone remembers a good scowl.  It reminded most folks of a mug shot.  It was original.

While getting my new license last month, I overheard one of the clerks explaining to a woman that smiling was prohibited.  As a non-smiler, I thought nothing of it, until now.

The Idaho Statesman reports that smiling is no longer allowed when getting a new license.  A DMV Spokesman told the paper that smiling with your teeth is not allowed because Idaho will soon comply with the government's facial recognition software.  The Gem State has not been compliant with the new standards for years.

Apparently, showing your teeth throws off big brother.  The state says they want to stop identity thieves from stealing your identity.  Should it come at the expense of your privacy?  Or is this another example of the government taking away your right to solitude?  Authorities tell us it's for the public good, although they said the same about the Patriot Act

So to smile or not to smile?  It depends if you want to drive in Idaho.  So much for freedom to choose in the Gem State.