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Titman says "They’re not getting my tag!"
Bristol Herald-Courier ^ | January 15, 2010 | David McGee

Posted on 01/15/2010 5:45:49 AM PST by Thirteen

BRISTOL, Va. – Theresa Titman knows all the jokes about the last name she proudly displays on a personalized license plate, but she isn’t laughing over a state agency’s recent ruling.

Last month, the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles notified Titman and her husband that they must surrender the tag she’s had for seven years – T1TMAN – because someone might find it “socially, racially or ethnically offensive or disparaging and used to describe intimate body parts or genitals.”

The tag was issued “in error,” according to the letter.

“They’re not getting my tag,” Titman said. “I was utterly – I don’t think any word could describe how I felt. That is my name. It has been my name for the 22 years I’ve been married and for someone to say it is vulgar is offensive to me.”

Titman said the state agency declined a request to issue the plate about 16 years ago because it was “offensive,” but relented several years later when they agreed to replace the “i” with the number “1.”

Displayed for years on a Jeep and now a Chevrolet Impala, the tag has generated some attention.

“I have people want to take a picture of it or they’ll say it’s the ‘coolest’ thing ever,” she said. “Not once has anybody ever said it was vulgar.”

Titman said she understands how someone might be taken aback by the plate if they didn’t know her name, but can’t understand the agency’s response.

“This state has closed all but two rest areas between here and Fairfax, they’re contracting out plowing the roads and people [in Richmond] don’t have anything else to do but worry about this? I just don’t get it,” she said.

Agency spokeswoman Melanie Stokes said the agency tries to catch offensive plates before they’re issued.

“The personalized license plate program is extremely popular. We have a computer program to catch inappropriate messages and we have eight criteria that we use. It sounds like this one did not pass the test,” Stokes said in a phone interview.

When told the tag has been in service for several years, Stokes admitted, “We definitely miss a few.”

Along with its Dec. 15 letter, the state agency included a new innocuous plate “XLU-3506,” but Titman has refused to install it on the car she drives daily to work every day as a dental assistant in Bristol, Va.

She also plans to continue displaying the personalized tag, even after it expires next month.

“I feel like the state is discriminating against me,” Titman said. “I pay taxes. I vote. I work every day. My husband works – he served 12 years in the Marine Corps – and I have a son getting ready to deploy to Afghanistan.”

Neither she nor her husband got any relief when they called the Abingdon and Richmond offices of the DMV to complain.

“I told the lady, ‘That is my name,’ and she said they “didn’t pay attention” to that,” Titman said.

This week, the couple submitted a letter requesting a hearing to appeal the ruling.

“I want a hearing as soon as possible and I also want to hear from the person who lodged a complaint against my family,” she wrote in the letter. “To discriminate against my family is criminal and, if a lawyer needs to be brought into this, I will do so and I can assure you I will win.”

Stokes, the DMV spokeswoman, said the couple has some options.

“If someone wants to keep a tag, we have an informal administrative hearing where the customer can explain all relevant information – i.e., it’s their last name,” Stokes said.

That information then goes to the DMV’s hearings office, which reviews the information and makes a recommendation to the agency’s commissioner, who makes the final decision, Stokes said.

That decision can ultimately be appealed to circuit court.


TOPICS: Chit/Chat; Humor; Miscellaneous; Weird Stuff
KEYWORDS: lping; offensive; tag; titman; virginia

1 posted on 01/15/2010 5:45:51 AM PST by Thirteen
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To: Thirteen

Assman was taken!


2 posted on 01/15/2010 5:47:04 AM PST by Dr. Ursus
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To: Dr. Ursus; bamahead

my favorite was 3MTA3


3 posted on 01/15/2010 5:48:17 AM PST by Perdogg ("Is that a bomb in your pants, or are you excited to come to America?")
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To: Thirteen
We're a third world country now -- slip the man a few bucks, and the government will look the other way.

It's how they do it in Kenya.

4 posted on 01/15/2010 5:48:43 AM PST by ClearCase_guy (We have the 1st so that we can call on people to rebel. We have 2nd so that they can.)
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To: Thirteen

Then, using this same line of reasoning, a Gay man who changes his name to “luvC*ck” could have vanity plates made to ‘honor’ his name just like Ms. Titman did.

Who do they think they are kidding? How many people put their last names on vanity plates? This was a childish “look at me, oh, please look at me ... I need attention” play be an adult.


5 posted on 01/15/2010 5:49:05 AM PST by Hodar (Who needs laws .... when this "feels" so right?)
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To: Hodar

who cares? This is america we have a god given right to be attention whores without big brother gov, radical feminazis, environutjobs, racebaiters, or hyperQuakers, telling how to live our lives.


6 posted on 01/15/2010 5:52:28 AM PST by Perdogg ("Is that a bomb in your pants, or are you excited to come to America?")
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To: Thirteen

That’s a vocation not a vanity tag......


7 posted on 01/15/2010 5:52:30 AM PST by nevergore ("It could be that the purpose of my life is simply to serve as a warning to others.")
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To: Thirteen

Too funny!


8 posted on 01/15/2010 5:53:29 AM PST by Travis McGee (---www.EnemiesForeignAndDomestic.com---)
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To: Thirteen
This one is OK:


9 posted on 01/15/2010 5:53:43 AM PST by pnh102 (Regarding liberalism, always attribute to malice what you think can be explained by stupidity. - Me)
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bookmark


10 posted on 01/15/2010 5:54:35 AM PST by ExGeeEye (P.U.M.A.--BC/BG!)
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To: Thirteen

try “sdunham” and just show your birth certificate.


11 posted on 01/15/2010 6:01:05 AM PST by biggredd1
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To: Thirteen
Photobucket
12 posted on 01/15/2010 6:01:28 AM PST by IrishPennant (If you can accept losing, you can't win. ~ Vince Lombardi)
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To: Thirteen
“They’re not getting my tag,” Titman said. “I was utterly – I don’t think any word could describe how I felt.

Doesn't she mean "udder-ly"?

13 posted on 01/15/2010 6:09:46 AM PST by 6SJ7 (atlasShruggedInd = TRUE)
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To: Perdogg

my favorite was 3MTA3

I sure understand your tag line, however, I shall remain clueless on the vanity tag, unless a clue is forthcoming.

The clue found on the net in an article why Virginia disallows the subject for a vanity plate.


14 posted on 01/15/2010 6:09:57 AM PST by wita
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To: Dr. Ursus
Assman was taken!

You got THAT right!


15 posted on 01/15/2010 6:12:12 AM PST by Dewey Revoltnow
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To: wita

This was a VA tag that was removed after some time. In VA your license plate is required on front and back, think about how this would look in a rear view mirror.


16 posted on 01/15/2010 6:13:08 AM PST by Perdogg ("Is that a bomb in your pants, or are you excited to come to America?")
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To: Hodar

If the state “allows” vanity plates, then they can’t complain when someone actually does something vain with them.

Talk about having too much time on your hands. Virginia taxpayer dollars at work, making sure no one is OFFENDED.


17 posted on 01/15/2010 6:14:08 AM PST by workerbee (Yes, I hate Obama because of his color: RED!)
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To: Perdogg

Got it. I still like your tag line better.


18 posted on 01/15/2010 6:17:21 AM PST by wita
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To: wita
my favorite was 3MTA3

I sure understand your tag line, however, I shall remain clueless on the vanity tag, unless a clue is forthcoming.

Visualize it in your rear view mirror.

19 posted on 01/15/2010 6:17:34 AM PST by Living Free in NH (Where's MY bailout???)
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To: pnh102

LOL. I knew this thread would be entertaining.


20 posted on 01/15/2010 6:24:19 AM PST by Rocky (Obama's ego: The "I's" have it.)
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21 posted on 01/15/2010 6:36:03 AM PST by Roscoe Karns
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To: Perdogg

Saw a picture of a Volkswagen Rabbit with the license plate “FXLK12”...


22 posted on 01/15/2010 6:37:16 AM PST by Andonius_99 (There are two sides to every issue. One is right, the other is wrong; but the middle is always evil.)
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To: Living Free in NH

Yeah.... well, I guess that only works if you are in a state that actually puts plates on the front of the car.

Some of things are so obscure it’s not possible to decipher them unless you know the person’s inside story...or are just plain stupid. In either case, you wonder why people waste their money.


23 posted on 01/15/2010 6:42:55 AM PST by Lee'sGhost (Johnny Rico picked the wrong girl!)
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To: Andonius_99
Several years ago, with my son driving and I'm in the passenger seat we spot a PA vanity plate that said "DILLIGAF", and we tried to figure out what it meant, but couldn't.

She stopped at a redlight and I asked her {young, attractive woman} what it meant and she smiled and said, "Do I look like I give a f---?"

I know it was a little rank, but both my son and I laughed our butts off.

24 posted on 01/15/2010 6:52:07 AM PST by USS Alaska (Nuke the terrorist savages - In Honor of Standing Wolf)
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To: Andonius_99

I’m ashamed to admit I got that one immediately.


25 posted on 01/15/2010 6:52:57 AM PST by andy58-in-nh (America does not need to be organized: it needs to be liberated.)
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26 posted on 01/15/2010 7:05:38 AM PST by red-dawg (We have learned to stop terrorism on planes by ourselves, it's time to do that in D.C.)
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To: USS Alaska

I saw the same car on the PA turnpike.


27 posted on 01/15/2010 7:05:58 AM PST by SoothingDave
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To: windcliff; onedoug; I Drive Too Fast

ping


28 posted on 01/15/2010 7:06:28 AM PST by stylecouncilor (What Would Jim Thompson Do?)
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To: Living Free in NH

Doesn’t work in MI. Only rear plates are required. :)


29 posted on 01/15/2010 7:08:49 AM PST by rintense (You do not advance conservatism by becoming more liberal. ~ rintense, 2006)
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To: Perdogg

LOL!!! I needed the clue. I did not get that at all. Very funny!


30 posted on 01/15/2010 7:16:42 AM PST by samiam1972 ("It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish."-Mother Teresa)
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To: Roscoe Karns

For sure....check that Adam’s Apple.


31 posted on 01/15/2010 7:19:35 AM PST by ErnBatavia (It's not the Obama Administration....it's the "Obama Regime".)
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To: Perdogg

Doesn’t mean anything either way, just some jumbled letters and numbers!


32 posted on 01/15/2010 7:26:10 AM PST by dalereed
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To: Thirteen
Some busybody saw the vanity plate “ISLCRK” and was sure it stood for “I sell crack”. She notified authorities who asked the owner of the plate what he thought it stood for and he said...

“Island creek, I live on Island creek.”

33 posted on 01/15/2010 7:26:26 AM PST by allmendream (Income is EARNED not distributed. So how could it be re-distributed?)
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To: Thirteen

Ahh yes, VA personalized plates (which if I remember correctly from when I lived there from 2000-2004, they run just $10) The two plates I remember the best were BEER PLZ and LQR PLZ, both seen at NAS Norfolk.


34 posted on 01/15/2010 8:36:14 AM PST by Severa (I can't take this stress anymore...quick, get me a marker to sniff....)
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To: Thirteen

35 posted on 01/15/2010 8:44:03 AM PST by JRios1968 (The real first rule of Fight Club: don't invite Chuck Norris...EVER)
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To: USS Alaska
Several years ago, with my son driving and I'm in the passenger seat we spot a PA vanity plate that said "DILLIGAF", and we tried to figure out what it meant, but couldn't.

We're limited to 7 spaces in my state.
36 posted on 01/15/2010 8:55:49 AM PST by Dewey Revoltnow
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To: Perdogg

“In VA your license plate is required on front and back, think about how this would look in a rear view mirror.”

AINIGRIV ? Phonetically A-”n-word”-IV?


37 posted on 01/15/2010 9:09:08 AM PST by Seizethecarp
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To: pnh102

Probably not. It’s just that the program they use to figure out what is OK wouldn’t think to check the letters requested against the background.

If someone took that picture and sent it to the DMV, my guess is that the plate would be recalled.

Yes, people think the license plates should be a free speech issue, but they are issued by the state, so they are not.

If you want the word “TITMAN” on the back of your car, there is nothing to keep you from getting a bumper sticker.


38 posted on 01/15/2010 9:25:49 AM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: Perdogg; Abathar; Abcdefg; Abram; Abundy; akatel; albertp; AlexandriaDuke; Alexander Rubin; ...
“I told the lady, ‘That is my name,’ and she said they “didn’t pay attention” to that,” Titman said.



Libertarian ping! Click here to get added or here to be removed or post a message here!
View past Libertarian pings here
39 posted on 01/16/2010 10:13:30 AM PST by bamahead (Few men desire liberty; most men wish only for a just master. -- Sallust)
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To: Andonius_99

The best vanity plate I’ve seen on a VW Bug was “FEATURE”. Of course you kinda have to be a little geeky to get it.


40 posted on 01/16/2010 11:10:21 AM PST by zeugma (Proofread a page a day: http://www.pgdp.net/)
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To: Thirteen
I think the car owner should prevail . The correct spelling is teat .
41 posted on 01/16/2010 11:15:33 AM PST by kbennkc (For those who have fought for it , freedom has a flavor the protected will never know F Trp 8th Cav)
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To: Thirteen; All

California years ago: 10SNE1.
Also Dean Martin had a tag that refer to his alcoholic consumption. “Despite Martin’s reputation as a heavy drinker — a reputation perpetuated via his vanity license plates reading ‘DRUNKY’ — he was remarkably self-disciplined.”
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dean_Martin


42 posted on 01/16/2010 12:11:03 PM PST by GOYAKLA (Flush Congress in 2010 & 2012)
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To: JRios1968

Bwahahahaha. I want that plate!

(but not enough to live in the Communist Paradise of Virginia)


43 posted on 01/16/2010 6:33:54 PM PST by gogogodzilla (Live free or die!)
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