There was a story on Notalwaysright of a blind person who went into a bank, cane, sunglasses and all. The teller refused to accept his state ID, saying that only a drivers license was acceptable. That one took a supervisor. I witnessed a store clerk refusing to accept a passport as ID. in that case, it appeared to be poor training. Since most everyone in the US uses a license for ID, the clerk had only been told to ask for that. The manager who resolved it was not thrilled by the training. The person with the passport, alas, behaved very much like an SS, rather than a displeased customer. Throwing a fit isn't the same as firmly asking for a higher up.
Re bolded. I have had that problem when visiting the USA. While we on a skiing holiday, some friends who lived in the area invited us to dinner. I wanted to take a nice bottle of wine. When I went to pay for it I was asked for ID. I have no problem with that. There is absolutely no way that I could be thought to be under 21, but I know that ID is required for everyone in some places, so I was prepared and brought my passport with me. No, I was told, that's not ID, I needed to produce my driving licence. I explained that I was British and didn't have a US driving licence, but showed my UK licence anyway. Both of these items have a photo and my date of birth. The girl insisted that I needed to have a US driving licence before she could sell me anything. She called her manager, who also explained that the only ID they were supposed to accept was a 'proper' driving licence. I did ask (politely, although I confess that the question may have been snarky even if the tone wasn't!) whether visitors to the USA were not allowed to drink alcohol during their visit, and if that was the case, I would go to the supermarket next door and buy chocolates for my hostess instead. At that point the manager very grudgingly allowed me to purchase my single bottle of wine.
I can't think it was the potential loss of the sale that made him change his mind, as he wasn't going to allow the sale in the first place, but I got the wine in the end, and we had a lovely evening with our friends. I can understand this is some parts of the USA, but it did seem strange in a major tourist area.