It’s been pretty well established that you can’t have hateful, divisive or crazy things on a vehicle’s license plate. Why people continue to think that a government agency like the DMV would let them get away with things like that still doesn’t make sense. Yet another person in Nevada has learned this lesson, as Reno’s KOLO-TV reports how the state’s DMV rejected his license plate that targeted Californians.
Adam Steelmon, the owner of the plate, told KOLO that in over 20 years he had never had a problem with the DMV. That is until June when his attempt at trying to make a statement with his license plate backfired. The plate on his vehicle read GOBK2CA. Apparently it was posted on Facebook and went viral —which isn’t surprising given the demographic of people who use Facebook. Steelmon claims his plate gets positive reactions from everyone who sees it, even cops.
“Local law enforcement have pulled me over to tell me they liked my license plate. Texas has pulled me over. In 20 years, I’ve had one person say ‘well I don’t think your license plates are very appropriate,’” Steelmon claims. While people may strangely agree with the plate, it seems like Steelmon may have done himself in. His plate going viral caught the attention of the Nevada DMV. But this brings up the question of how the plate got approved to begin with if it was inappropriate in the first place? Apparently someone complained.
The DMV in Nevada says that it only takes one complaint for a license plate to be reviewed by their special license committee.
“All it takes is for one person to issue or file a complaint. If it goes against the statute, we have a duty to execute on that and recall it,” says Eli Rohl, Public Information Officer for the Nevada DMV in Carson City.
Rhol explained that state statutes determine what you can’t put on your plate. And Steelmon’s plate fell within this statue.
“Can’t print numbers upside down, can’t do more than 7 numbers, you can’t express contempt, ridicule or superiority of race, ethnic heritage, or gender. Can’t have any sexual, derogatory or obscene. Can’t contain a direct or indirect reference to drugs, or drug paraphernalia, or a gang and it can’t make a defamatory reference to a person or a group,” Rohl explained. In this instance, the defamed group is Californians.
Those that find their plates rejected can appeal which is what Steelmon is doing. His hearing was on July 12th. There a judge would approve whether or not he can keep his plate. If approved he can keep giving those damn Californians hell!