Nebraska legislators have approved an outrageous bill designed to put anti-choice wording on state license plates. The bill, LB 46, creates a platform for religiously motivated anti-abortion advocates through a medium traditionally reserved for government speech.
Please ask the governor to reject this bill for the adoption of a new state license plate that would read "Choose Life". If passed, this would be the first plate offer in the state promoting a theocratic political statement. The state neither offers a pro-choice message on its plates nor does the Legislature have any apparent plans to create one.
LB 46 will soon go before Gov. Pete Ricketts for approval or a veto. FFRF encourages concerned Nebraskans to voice their opposition directly to the governor!
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(Keep reading if you wish to learn more about the bill.)
Currently, the state of Nebraska offers license plates promoting breast cancer awareness, mountain lion conservation, Cornhusker spirit, Creighton University, and the University of Nebraska Omaha, among others. If adopted into law, LB 46 would require the state to design and manufacture a government-sanctioned "Choose Life" license plate that vehicle owners could purchase directly from the state DMV.
State Sen. Ernie Chambers, a well-known freethinker, has been a consistent voice of opposition to this political and religiously charged stunt. Chambers has said he is opposed to the license plates because they would represent the state choosing a side of a very politically controversial issue. Adoption of the plates would also represent the state government bending to the Religious Right's views on the topic of abortion. The bill has drawn support from religious groups in the state such as the Nebraska Family Alliance, the Nebraska Catholic Conference and Choose Life Nebraska.
Sen. Chambers filed 24 floor amendments with proposed alternatives to the "Choose Life" wording. Among the alternatives were "Choose Life: Abolish The Death Penalty" and "Choose Love And Happiness." Chambers' more tongue-in-cheek suggestions included "Choose Wisdom Over Riches," "This Too Will Pass," and "Choose Honest Officials." The Legislature voted down three of Chambers' proposed replacements, and one from Sen. Adam Morfeld, before voting to end debate over the legislation.