Another Canadian man has had his vanity license plates revoked because officials deemed them offensive. What was the repugnant message, you ask? What kind of vile verbiage did his plates sport? None. His “custom” plates simply displayed his last name.
The Nova Scotia Registrar of Motor Vehicles banned Lorne Grabher from continuing to use his last name on his vanity license plates, due to fear that the public might not understand the context. The province’s Transportation Department claims they received a complaint about the plates from a woman in October of 2016, shortly after then-candidate Trump’s infamous comments were leaked. She deemed the plates “misogynistic.”
Canada’s Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms correctly contends that the removal of the plates was a violation of Mr. Grabher’s right to free expression. You know your society is in dire straits when the most vile, vulgar and violent lyrics are perfectly acceptable- in fact ubiquitous- in rap music, online and on the majority of cable television shows, but the government will not allow your last name to be seen in public.
Would Mr. Grabhim be forced to remove his name from his license plates? Would Mrs. Grabhim be so compelled?
Check any big city’s White Pages and you’ll find Cockmans and Pussmans. Should they be prevented from putting their last names on their car’s plates? Their mailboxes? It’s one thing for a 10-year-old to snicker at them, but quite another for a government to find one’s surname offensive.
In fact, I’d call it a hate crime.