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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments


Well, maybe the BMV is being run more efficiently these days (and it is a joy to get in and out so quickly, or do business online and never even go there), but they sure have made a mess of licens-plate policy. First they nearly wreck the specialty-plates program with a heavyhanded and obvious attempt to mess with a gay youth support group. Now they've suspended at least temporarily the vanity-plates prgram in an apparent hissy fit over a cop who's suing them for not renewing his three-year-old plate:

The lawsuit that prompted the BMV to park the vanity plate program was filed in Marion County Superior Court in May by the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana on behalf of a Greenfield policeman, Rodney Vawter.

For three years, Vawter had a license plate that read "0INK" — with a zero in place of the O — but when he tried to renew it in March, it was rejected.

The lawsuit says Vawter considers the plate's verbal pig snort "an ironic statement of pride in his profession."

"Corporal Vawter selected the phrase 'oink' for his license plate because, as a police officer who has been called 'pig' by arrestees, he thought it was both humorous and also a label that he wears with some degree of pride," the lawsuit states.

[. . .]

The BMV this year told Vawter the plate was inappropriate, and cited a state statute that allows the BMV to refuse to issue a plate that officials believe carries "a connotation offensive to good taste and decency" or "would be misleading."

Yeah, well, offensive to good taste and decency if its used against the police, not when it's used by one of them. I totally understand where the cop is coming from. If you adopt the derogatory terms used to disrespect you, it gives you the power and takes it away from your detractors. After years of hearing that editorial page people don't understand the real world because they live in ivory towers, I made a sign and had it on my door for several years: tour d'ivoire. I'll see your disdain and raise you in snooty French.

Posted in: Hoosier lore


Sat, 07/27/2013 - 1:44pm

"0- I-N-K"  reads Zero Ink.  Like me, the cop has no tattoos. Who could be offended?