I mentioned this new religious license plate in Florida before, and now it looks like it’s closer to reality. I don’t object strongly to it — it’s optional, and people who want it have to pay an extra $25 — but some of the arguments against it are embarrassing, and the arguments for it are even worse. There are a lot of variations of the slippery slope being thrown around.
Rep. Kelly Skidmore said she is a Roman Catholic and goes to Mass on Sundays, but she believes the “I Believe” plate is inappropriate for the government to produce.
“It’s not a road I want to go down. I don’t want to see the Star of David next. I don’t want to see a Torah next. None of that stuff is appropriate to me,” said Skidmore, a Democrat who voted against the plate in committee. “I just believe that.”
What? So the objection to a blatantly Christian plate is that it might encourage those Jews in Florida to brag about their religion on their cars? Is Judaism that offensive?
There is a better example of what kinds of interest groups the state might have to accommodate: the ACLU suggests that this could open the doors to KKK plates. That’s definitely much more offensive than driving while Jewish, but still…on giving it a little thought, I don’t think I’d mind if the hateful idiots of the KKK all labeled themselves, and paid the state for the privilege.
Simon, of the ACLU, said approval of the plate could prompt many other groups to seek their own designs, and they could claim discrimination if their plans were rejected. That could even allow the Ku Klux Klan to get a plate, Simon said.
But then there is the usual Christian hypocrisy. These plates are going to be offered selectively, only to groups of which the Florida legislature approves. Guess who’s left out?
Bullard, the plate’s sponsor, isn’t sure all groups should be able to express their preference. If atheists came up with an “I Don’t Believe” plate, for example, he would probably oppose it.
That’s the way, Bullard old boy; stop the slide down a slippery slope and replace it with an official state sponsored religious preference.