Gay Plates Ok Says Judge

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Back in June I blogged about a judge who forced the city of Jacksonville to fly gay-pride banners for six days and found it disturbing because it's not the job of the judge to advance gay rights. Now a new judge has stripped the state of Utah the right to regulate its own transportation laws:

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (AP) -- The state of Utah can't block a woman from using her license plate to tell the world "GAYSROK," a judge has ruled.

The state has no good reason to prevent Elizabeth Solomon from having that plate -- which can be read "Gays are OK" or "Gays Rock" -- or another one saying "GAYRYTS," according to Jane Phan, an administrative law judge with the Utah State Tax Commission.

The state can appeal the July 19 decision.

Dani Eyer, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Utah, which represented Solomon, countered: "The government can't pick and choose what subjects it likes and does not like."
So according to the ACLU I should be allowed to display my "JEWSSUK" license plate or "NEONAZI" tag on my car. With that kind of liberal thinking I should be able to register the novelty slogan "EATDICK" because "the government can't pick and choose what subjects it likes and does not like."

Well actually, it can - or should - be able to regulate its own services. As you may recall from your teenage years: driving is not a right, it's a privilege.

To be fair, a tag that reads "GAYSROK" isn't quite as egregious as one that commands "KILSPIK," but we must realize despite the opinions of the ACLU someone has to draw the line somewhere.

We're not talking about free speech bumper stickers here, but government issued identification tags. It makes the rules. Inasmuch as I would despise a ruling that halted the distribution of "Choose Life" license plates here in Florida, I wouldn't go about saying the state shouldn't have the ability to do so.