If I take out of your claim everything that follows the words "in essence" - because that indicates where you stop talking fact and start speculating - I'm left with "target records some details of your driver's license when asking for proof of age. That's the way it works in any California pharmacy when you buy pseudoephedrine today. CVS knows my weight, yes, and they know I have allergies. Maybe they can send me a coupon to make up for the hassle of showing an ID to get sudafed next time - but everybody does do it, all over the state. I see no difference between this and giving my credit card to some stranger at a restaurant and assuming they don't copy the details down to use later on Amazon. At some point you have to assume it's not personal (in either direction - Target probably does no more or less with the information than any other retailer). What's the worst they'll do? clog your mailbox with coupons? Oh my!
So, I'm in my mid 40s. If I buy a video game for mature audiences, I'm REQUIRED to give them my drivers license? Not only that, I allow them to electronically store my information? Insane, because my personal information is none of Target's $&^$#@&*$ business. And again, if I give them my DL info and my credit card or debit card, about the only thing they do not have is my SS#. That is more information than I'm comfortable giving, and I think it is a violation of my privacy. I'm amazed that Americans are such lemmings to freedom and privacy, that they would simply shrug their shoulders and say, OK, that's fine, here you go...
This, "every retailer does it", is a convenient trap for folks to fall into, and is worse yet a pathetic excuse to violate the rights of the consumer.
I hear what you're saying, I just don't agree it's a problem I'd try to lay on Target even initially. We got some consumer protection commission and now congress wants to increase it's size (? suddenly they LIKE consumer protection? they think a bigger panel is more cost efficient?) Who knows what'll come of it. I do know my Euro friends always tell me we have zero privacy protection in the US.
As to the actual game purchase, is gamestop any different? Amazon? buy there? Maybe Target just has a more strict interpretation of your state's laws regarding sale of mature games