Republican presidential hopeful and Texas governor Rick Perry is taking some slack for a specialty license plate which was approved by a 4-3 vote on Thursday by the board of the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles.
Christian License Plate Not PC
The approved plate says “One State Under God” and depicts three crosses, to the irritation of some civil liberties groups in Texas.
Perry has so far refrained from commenting on the “Calvary Hill” plate, as it is known, however his office did release a statement saying that, “This was a decision for the DMV board and Governor Perry was not involved.”
Who is Responsible?
However, all of the members of the board of the Texas DMV were appointed by Perry, and this latest controversy comes on the heels of a television campaign ad which aired in Iowa that also drew criticism. The ad is targeted to appeal to evangelical Christians, criticizes gays doing military service and also claims that if elected president, Perry will put an end to what he calls in the ad President Obama’s “attacks on religion.”
Kathy Miller is the President of the Texas Freedom Network, which is an activist group against the Calvary Hill license plate.
“It has become pretty clear that our governor is dismissive of religious beliefs other than his own, and now his governmental appointees have voted to send a message that Texas is unwelcoming to the religious faiths of some of its citizens,” said Ms. Miller.
Donations to Charity
Over the past several years Texas has introduced about 130 specialty license plates. These plates promote a large variety of subjects and causes, from bike riding to colleges and universities. Car owners who choose such a plate pay an extra fee for it, with have the money going to the state and the rest going to a designated private organization such as a university or charity.
The Calvary Hill plate helps to support a Christian-based youth group which focuses on anti-gang work in the east Texas city of Nacogdoches.