Indiana | Law - Gay, LGBT | Law Enforcement

Legislature Gets Its Way; LGBT Youth Group Will No Longer Sell License Plates

Indiana_Youth_Group-thumb-250x125-23611For a brief, shining moment in Indiana, LGBT folk and their allies could procure the very attractive license plates at right, simultaneously beautifying their cars and ensuring that the Indiana Youth Group receive a $25 state donation. No longer.

From The Bilerico Project:

Homophobic Republican state senators ... originally tried to sneak in legislation during the session to target the LGBT youth group's plate but after community uproar decided not to pursue the attempt. Republican State Senate President Pro Tempore David Long told the Indianapolis Star he had found a new "solution" by demanding the BMV revoke the plate on contractual grounds.

And what were those? Apparently, Indiana legislators' gripe was that those purchasing the Indiana Youth Group license plates were given special preference for low plate numbers. This is bad and wrong, apparently. But here's the thing: Graig Lubsen, until recently the Communications Director for the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, acknowledges that there's a long history in Indiana of giving non-profit donors low license plate numbers. It just wasn't an issue 'til the gays did likewise. But now the baby's being thrown out with the gaywater: the Greenways Foundation and the Indiana 4-H Groups, too, have been cited for giving out low plate numbers.

Incidentally, according to Bilerico:

The same legislators who sent the letter granted the Indianapolis Colts a license plate previously and specifically allowed them to give away low number plates.

Football! Also, and less incidentally: The Indiana Youth Group -- which is one of the oldest and most well-organized LGBT youth groups in America (check out their website!) -- had to apply several times and eventually sue to obtain the right to sell a plate at all. The resulting plate was available for two months.


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  1. Looks like another Romen-based lawsuit.

    Posted by: K in VA | Mar 18, 2012 12:01:42 PM

  2. Typical BS from a republican run state
    I hope they go to court or I hope the football team loses its plates

    Posted by: GeorgeM | Mar 18, 2012 12:54:41 PM

  3. IYG should sue; the problem with that of course is it takes $$$. This is an obvious case of anti-gay harassment if there ever was one.

    Posted by: MikeH | Mar 18, 2012 12:58:10 PM

  4. What do you expect from a state where most of the straight men get an erection every time the backside of sheep are in front of them.

    Posted by: Dale | Mar 18, 2012 12:58:18 PM

  5. this is why i left the hoosier state. yuk.

    Posted by: kodiak | Mar 18, 2012 10:58:07 PM

  6. why does it matter if the plate numbers are low. i dont get it.

    Posted by: matty | Mar 18, 2012 11:56:47 PM

  7. Matty, I think it's because they're somewhat collectible? I found this:

    Posted by: Gillian | Mar 19, 2012 1:10:26 PM

  8. The plate is still available through the State of Indiana

    Posted by: Sam Molloy | Mar 19, 2012 1:16:01 PM

  9. My error. The indiana BMV no longer will offer it. The decision is being appealed. No new plates will be approved "this year".

    Posted by: Sam Molloy | Mar 19, 2012 1:34:39 PM

  10. The letter from BMV states: "[T]he BMV suspends IYG's further participation in the Special Group Recognition Plate Program as of the date of this letter, and will not issue any new plates until such time that the Legislature permits the BMV to do so. While no new plates may be issued, the BMV will renew existing registrations."

    Thankfully I was able to get a plate, but no new plates will be issued until "the Legislature permits the BMV to do so." Translation: when hell freezes over - or after yet another lawsuit. Gays have to sue for what most people get by being citizens of the state. And yet what we're asking for is deemed "special rights" by opponents. Okay...

    Posted by: Gary Alton Russell | Mar 19, 2012 1:53:31 PM

  11. As a born and raised Hoosier for most of my life, and having been both a recipient of IYG's services and later a volunteer, this is absolutely disgusting.

    I love how no one has mentioned that the IU Foundation's low-number plates are reserved for the elite (Just TRY getting a number below 1,000)and I'm sure the same is the case for Notre Dame and Purdue. Fraternal Order of Police plates? You bet those low-numbers are for VIPs.

    I hope the legal community can fight this and win.

    Posted by: MarkR | Mar 19, 2012 6:45:56 PM

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