Florida wants to offer devout Christian drivers a distinctive…mark:
Florida drivers can order more than 100 specialty license plates celebrating everything from manatees to the Miami Heat, but one now under consideration would be the first in the nation to explicitly promote a specific religion. The Florida Legislature is considering a specialty plate with a design that includes a Christian cross, a stained-glass window and the words “I Believe.”
Rep. Edward Bullard, the plate’s sponsor, said people who “believe in their college or university” or “believe in their football team” already have license plates they can buy. The new design is a chance for others to put a tag on their cars with “something they believe in,” he said.
If the plate is approved, Florida would become the first state to have a license plate featuring a religious symbol that’s not part of a college logo. Approval would almost certainly face a court challenge.
The problem with the state manufacturing the plate is that it “sends a message that Florida is essentially a Christian state” and, second, gives the “appearance that the state is endorsing a particular religious preference,” said Howard Simon, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Florida.
I’m not all that enamored of vanity plates myself — unless I can get “Fuh Cue”. Still, my own common sense tells me that an easy way to have their cake & eat it too would be to offer this kind of mark for any religious group. That way, it wouldn’t be promoting a particular religion, since any religion could have their own mark.
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.
…well Fuh Cue then.
This is why these things always result in huge conflicts, people know that when some Christian Statist proposes something like this they never have in mind the fact that not everyone in the US prays how they do, if at all. Thus, the appropriate thing to do when they throw a tantrum is ignore them.
BTW: see those links on the word “mark”? I wanted to segue from this to a larger point about how ironic it is that supposed Christians want to be identified by the State, let alone that they support the State at all and try to co-opt it, and how IMO any group wanting to be identified as a certain religion or lack thereof on a government-issued identification is wasting time at best, if not practically BEGGING for trouble in the long-term (check out the second “mark” link: nuff said), but by now I figure that should be obvious. Besides, it’s enough that at least in the case of Christians it boldly contradicts that book they claim to love so much.