North Carolina Sued Over 'Choose Life' License Plates

Illustration for article titled North Carolina Sued Over 'Choose Life' License Plates

North Carolina has become the latest state to issue "Choose Life" license plates — and the ACLU is suing to stop them.

Advertisement

According to the Raleigh News & Observer, the plates will cost $25, with $15 going to the Carolina Pregnancy Care Fellowship, which "exists to offer help and encouragement to those God calls into pregnancy care ministry" and which operates crisis pregnancy centers throughout the state. Attempts to introduce alternative plates that read "Respect Choice" or "Trust Women. Respect Choice" failed to gain traction with the Republican-controlled North Carolina legislature. So the ACLU is suing on behalf of a group of "pro-choice automobile owners" who say the state is preferentially endorsing one viewpoint. Katherine Lewis Parker, legal director of the ACLU's North Carolina branch, explains,

The state is opening up a forum to one side of the argument. When they do that, they are constitutionally obligated to open to the other side.

She adds that "this is a free speech case — not an abortion case," and that the ACLU would be equally likely to challenge a state that produced only pro-choice plates. But state Rep. Mitch Gillespie, the plates' Republican sponsor, has another take — he says the suit is merely an effort by "an evil liberal organization to try to appease its liberal base." He also says he thinks it will fail. He could be right — "Choose Life" plates have been adopted in other states (like Mississippi, pictured above). However, in New Jersey, that's the result of an anti-abortion organization wearing down the state DMV until it finally gave in to save legal fees. If the ACLU is more persistent, perhaps they can convince the courts that the state Division of Motor Vehicles shouldn't get a vote on abortion rights.

NC Pro-Life License Plate Draws Fire [Daily Tarheel]
Suit Challenges North Carolina's ‘Choose Life' License Plate [WSJ]
Lawsuit Challenges 'Choose Life' Plate [Raleigh News & Observer]

DISCUSSION

mireilleco
Mireille is sensational, like a She-Hulk

I'd like to point out that the Mississippi license plate pictured is anti-white male. There's a white girl (obviously because boys don't wear bows) and what appears to be a boy of color (possibly a tomboy, there are no obviously male hair accoutrements to use in the picture as an indication of sex). What about the white boys? Do we not want to choose life for them? How will they find positive role models if there aren't white males on license plates? This is just another example of the systematic mistreatment of and bias against white men!

(I'm not serious)