HOUSTON – Editor’s Note: This article may contain words or allusions to words and themes that are offensive or explicit.
Some Texas motorists pay $150 a year for the privilege to proclaim whatever it is they wish to proclaim on the 12-inch by six-inch aluminum plate bolted to their bumper -- as long as the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles approves the six-character message.
The state agency sifts through thousands of specialty license plate applications each year, rejecting the distasteful, hateful and misleading.
According to DMV records obtained by KPRC 2, during the first 10 months of 2022, 5,195 personalized plate messages were deemed unsuitable for the state’s roads.
The DMV categorically dismisses messages that are considered offensive or inappropriate. Last year, it rejected requests for plates that read “DRP DE4D,” “FU CALI,” “UR A BBY,” “TXN AF,” “IDGAFYO,” “FU DOJ,” “LIBTARD,” “0 F GVN,” “FUQ BDN,” “MOVEBICH” and “ON YO-ASS,” among many, many others.
The agency also declines plates that reference race, ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation, whether derogatory or not. Rejects in this category include “MTRLGRL,” “BOOK LDY,” “THE MANN,” “ISLO BOI,” “MR@DIVA,” “AGGLADY,” “NEWSGUY” and “MR. CRAZY.”
Also prohibited are references to violence, illegal activities, drugs, law enforcement agencies and government entities. Examples pulled from the DMV’s cutting room floor include “US*CIA,” “NOT EPA,” “POLICEE,” and “I DNT STP.”
The department also refuses to issue any personalized plate messages that contain “a direct or indirect negative instruction or command directed at another individual related to the operation of a motor vehicle.” “BACH UP,” “JST MOVE,” “TEST MEE,” “C4TCH M3,” “OMG M@VE” and “MOOVE” are among the examples in this category.
Here are few more notable rejects we spotted while sifting through the DMV’s records:
- “SR8 EVIL”
- “U IS SLO”
- “EL MACHO”
Scroll below to view all the vanity plate combinations the Texas DMV rejected between January and October of 2022.
Why the Texas DMV may decline a personalized plate
The Texas DMV reviews personalized license plates before they’re manufactured. While evaluating submissions, staff consider how the public will view each plate and rejects any “vanitized” message that could be construed as offensive. Here are the agency’s vanity plate guidelines and restrictions:
*The information below is from the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles.
1. The pattern conflicts with a current or proposed pattern featured on other license plates issued by the state.
2. The pattern is considered objectionable or misleading or could be viewed directly or indirectly as:
- Indecent, including a reference to a sexual act; sexual body parts; excretory or bodily fluids or functions; or a “69″ format not used in combination with a vehicle make;
- Vulgar (swear or curse words);
- Derogatory (words that belittle, demean, or disparage any person, group, race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, sexual orientation, or associated with an organization that advocates such expressions);
- Referring to race, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation, whether the reference is derogatory or not;
- An illegal activity (including gangs, violence, implied threats of harm, or expressions that describe, advertise, advocate, promote, encourage, glorify, or condone violence, crime or unlawful conduct);
- An illegal drug or a controlled substance, or the physiological state produced by such substances, intoxicated states, or expressions that describe, advertise, advocate, promote, encourage, or glorify such items or states;
- A representation of, or reference to, law enforcement, military branches, or other governmental entities and their titles. This includes any reference or acronym for law enforcement, military branches, public or official governmental office, position, or status; or law enforcement or military rank or status. A personalized plate pattern that refers to a publicly or privately funded college or university is allowed.
- A pattern set aside exclusively for use on military or other restricted use license plates (like DV for Disabled Veterans).
The personalized plates rejected by the Texas DMV in 2022
This is a list of vanity plate combinations the Texas DMV rejected between January and October of 2022.
Warning: the following document contains words and phrases that or offensive or explicit.
Click here to view the personalized plates the Texas DMV rejected in 2021.
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