the LYNCH report

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Good News: South Carolina to Allow Faith-Based License Plates…

with 8 comments

State's name goes on top; religious slogan on bottom. Total separation of church and state? About 4 inches. Advertising one's self-righteousness? Priceless!

Tired of settling for a mere Jesus-fish on the back of his car to advertise his self-righteousness, Lieutenant Governor R. Andre Bauer of South Carolina has picked up where Florida left off: Mr. Bauer wants SC to issue custom license plates with a Christian cross and the words “I Believe” on them.

In response, we sent Mr. Bauer the following email, and eagerly await his reply:


I’m delighted to see you’ve approved a license plate design with Christian iconography and the term “I believe”.

In the spirit of customized, faith-based license plates, I too would like to request a specialized design. My design features an inverted cross, with a pentagram at its base. The pentagram should be flaming spectacularly. In the section where the Christian plate reads “I believe” I’ll request you add “Sin is the Answer”. Space permitting, I’d also like to see the numbers “666” inscribed towards the right-hand side, vertically. These too should be flaming, for added effect, with the numbers themselves in a blood red. Can the blood possibly drip from the numbers, or would that involve additional costs?

I understand the fee for such a custom, faith-based plate is $4,000. Please advise to whom the check shall be made out, and also the turn-around time to delivery – as I’m sure you can imagine, I’m quite anxious to display my new plates!

Thanks again for showing your leadership in approving faith-based license plates in South Carolina – I too agree the “separation of church and state” nuts should quit their complaining and, as I’m sure you, as a good American, will agree, my right to express my faith stands on equal footing with yours.


Lucifer “Hot Plates!” Beelzebub”

Our version of the “religio-plate”…


8 Responses

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  1. Though I think our society has found the most ridiculous things to squabble about, I think this is a “freedom of expression” ruling and people should be able to put anything they want on their tag as long as they want to pay the price and it is not sexual in nature or truly offensive. Expressing religious beliefs is not offensive! Openly expressing and advertising your sexual preferences to the world is!
    Wake up people! What is happening all around you that has a major affect on your life, while you constantly find silly insignificant things to bicker about?

    Janet Windsor

    July 7, 2008 at 5:33 am

  2. We, a nation, need to focus on more important things than what a license plate looks like. Things like hunger in America, the homeless situation, the next president, military hostages around the world, GAS PRICES and those who raise them. You know, more important issues. We are arguing over a license plate, come on people, grow up, get a life!!! Get outside!!!

    Joe in Texas

    July 7, 2008 at 5:35 am

  3. I’m so glad to see somebody turn this into something unintended. It never ceases to both amaze and flabbergast me when a “group” opposed to such things appeals for fair treatment. For reasons beyond my understanding there are those who mock Christians by putting forth examples of their own particular bias. These selfsame folk would hardly dare to mock Islam or other faiths for fear of being perceived as insensitive. Yet they’ve no such qualms when it comes to Christianity. Too, they also fear what sort of riots, mob violence, and calls for the death of those who’d treat Islam in the same vein. It strikes me that Muslims have little sense of humor when it comes to mockery and/or teasing about their religious views, their “founder”, and the Quran.
    Christianity can and has been dragged through the muck and Jesus Himself was scorned and mocked and vilified and strange and vile depictions of Him have been made; the Bible has been defecated and urinated upon, it has been burned, Christians themselves are the constant butt of jokes and inuendo. They are expected to take it in stride…to not have such a thin skin…to “take it like a man.” Yet Muslims revolt if, for example, a cartoonist draws an editorial depiction of their founder. They put a death sentence on an author who caricaturizes the Quran. They punish those whose beliefs are not their own by beheading them.
    The person who applied for the so-called vanity plate, whether serious or not, has exposed the dark underbelly and intolerance of those who are not merely anti-Christian, but who are also for the extermination of Christianity. Try as they might, they cannot find the wording “separation of church and state” in the Constitution or Bill of Rights. Nor can they find the so-called “wall” to which they insistently allude. Thomas Jefferson used the phrase in an 1802 letter to the Danbury Baptist Association. The Jefferson phrase was quoted by the Supreme Court. In other words, it’s made up wording.


    July 7, 2008 at 5:55 am

  4. Lieutenant Governor R. Andre Bauer is spot-on in pursuing production of this secular license plate for South Carolina!

    It is a refreshing addition to the availability of custom license plates. We should all celebrate the freedoms which this represents – not censor it.

    Of course, this certainly DOES NOT fall under the realm of violating the separation of church and state. That separation involves disallowing the actual political influence of organized religions in politics… NOT the mere acknowledgment of the existence of a religious belief or organization.

    Since Muslims have been able to enjoy the use of federal USPS-issued postage stamps (since 2001) which honor Muslim religious holidays, we certainly should embrace our diversity and extend our freedom of choice to license plates!

    See .

    Why be a crybaby about this? Embrace change! And, oh by the way, your proctologist called… they’ve found your head.


    July 7, 2008 at 5:56 am

  5. Thanks for the comment, Janet.

    I’m not sure, tho, how committed you are to freedom of expression, since you feel the kind you prefer (expressing religious beliefs) you’re in favour of while the kind you don’t approve of (sexual preference) you appear to oppose. It’s pretty easy being pro-free expression when everyone is saying things you like to hear; the true test of one’s convictions is when you start hearing or seeing things you don’t approve of – are those people permitted their opinion too?

    The issue here, really, isn’t so much one of freedom of expression as it is separation of church and state – note that only christians are permitted a phrase on their plates: other religions may have a symbol but no words.


    July 7, 2008 at 6:03 am

  6. Thanks for the comments, Walter.

    My point is one of favouritism towards a particular religion – frankly I don’t care WHAT that religion is, and you’re mistaken in believing I wouldn’t be just as offended by special treatment towards an islamic license plate.

    You’re quite right about the absence of the phrase “separation of church and state” in the US Constitution, and also about Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists (altho he paraphrased Roger Williams). If you look at the historical basis of Jefferson’s point of view, it was that all faiths should be treated equally (as opposed to ignored in their entirety).

    I’m all for everyone being able to express their faith to equal degrees. A Lt. Governor playing favourites with a particular religion is not in keeping with that, regardless of what that religion may be.


    July 7, 2008 at 6:16 am

  7. Interesting the number of references to islam…always good sport to watch religions compete for territory (unfortunately it’s usually a blood sport…).

    Ahmed: you’re half right: the purpose of keeping separate church and state is to avoid religion influencing politics, I’ll grant you that. However it’s equally about avoiding politics influencing people’s religious beliefs.

    Where I’ll agree with you is this: we should all be able to celebrate any of our beliefs with equal treatment.

    Try turning this issue on its head and see if you still feel the same way: what if the Lt. Governor suggested that islamic iconography and catch phrases appear on the state’s license plates. Would you be equally strong in your defense? Or would it outrage you? It is, after all, the exact same issue, only with a different particular faith…


    July 7, 2008 at 6:26 am

  8. […] North Carolina, with their Lieutenant Governor’s odd proposal for christian license plates (see our story here). Then today, Headline News featured a report on a white woman who was offended by (and refused to […]

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