Monday, January 14, 2008

Bicycle Licence Plates?

The League of Illinois Bicyclists seems like a fine organization doing good work, and I'm happy to be a member, but I don't have to agree with everything they do.

Annually, they flog their commemorative license plate, which costs $28 and can be used for one month instead of a regular plate. A bicycle license plate on your car always seemed to me like a commemorative handgun for a pacifist, and I've always passed.

But wait!

This year, they are trying for a permanent plate:

"This year we are working a getting a permanent SHARE THE ROAD license
plate for Illinois and are surveying our plate holders. We must get a
minimum of 850 firm commitments for this to happen."

There only need to be 850? No wonder Illinois has so many difference license plates. The Illinois Secretary of State's office lists the following plates:

* Amateur Radio
* America Remembers

So, who can quickly tell me what we are remembering here?

* Antique Vehicle
* B-Truck
* Charitable Vehicle
* Collegiate [21 different plates for various colleges]
* Education
* Environmental
* Farm Truck & Trailer
* Firefighter Memorial
* Hearing Impaired
* Illinois Hospice

* Illinois Michigan Canal
* Illinois Pan Hellenic Series [Four of these, honoring those fraternities who have had the most drunk driving arrests over the years.]
* Mammogram
* Master Mason
* Mileage Tax Truck
* Military [18 different plates]
* Motorcycle [3 plates]
* Organ Donor [only one! I was expecting one plate for each organ, but no...]

* Park District Youth
* Passenger
* Peoria Wildlife
* Persons With Disabilities
* Pet Friendly

* Police Memorial
* Prevent Violence
* Recreational Trailers
* Recreational Vehicles
* Route 66
* Sporting Series [There are 6 of these: duck, turkey, rival gang member, bass, pheasant, duck]
* Trailers
* Trucks over 8000 lbs.

How can such a confusing array of license plates possibly serve one of the main purposes of license plates, which is to allow people to easily identify the car? The answer is, that this confusing array just causes confusion. With such a small minimum order, it's hard to imagine the state ends up making much net income from these. But they make a lot of political interests happy. Do cyclists have to stoop so low?

1 comment:

dbarish1957 said...

Touche Mike. I won't mention anything about the pretty cardinal on my environmental plate.