Utah Afraid License Plates Honoring Martin Luther King May Support Abortion

Usually when it comes to controversies over license plates and choice issues, the instigating factor are “Choose Life” plates being created by the states, with donations going to fund religious, anti-abortion crisis pregnancy centers.

But in Utah, an abortion debate is being fought over a different type of plate — one honoring the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

According to the Salt Lake Tribune, conservative lawmakers are criticizing† proposal to create special plates in honor of the civil rights leader, with a portion of the proceeds going to promote “human rights.”† Opponents say “human rights” is too broad a category, and worry that one “right” may be a woman’s right to choose. “Rep. Brad Daw, R-Orem, asked Roderic R. Land, chairman of the Utah Martin Luther King Human Rights Commission who pushed the bill with [Rep. Rebecca] Chavez-Houck, to define human rights ó†and asked him if he personally feels abortion is a right. Land responded that he is pro-choice. Daw said the wording of the bill was too ‘wide open.’ He said, ‘We leave ourselves open for things that frankly I donít agree with,’ and opposed the bill.”

Other “rights” that concern the lawmakers are education and ending hunger, both of which the Utah politicians state should not be issues the government gets involved in.

Apparently the legacy of Dr. King isn’t terribly inspiring to Utah Republicans.

Photo credit: wikimedia commons


Annmari Lundin
Annmari Lundin4 years ago

The only rights the repukes care about is the ones that takes away women's rights!

Karen F.
karen Friedman4 years ago

Hell the Repubs. don't care about rights, just their narrow social agenda.

Lindy E.
Belinda E.4 years ago

@Ed G.: Utah is not San Francisco or New York City, never was and never will be. When you choose to live in a particular state, you are choosing its dominant culture as well as its climate, economy, etc. Utah must abide by the laws of the United States, but there is no reason they must adopt the customs and standards of other states - that's why we are a federation of states, instead of a single, unified nation. When an issue is settled at the federal level, Utah will comply. Until then, they will follow their own consciences - which are genuinely (unlike certain GOP candidates) anti-abortion.

And I say again, Martin Luther King, Jr just does not loom large in their history books: they've never had a civil rights problem involving blacks, but they did have a civil rights problem over religion, having been persecuted and even murdered in state after state until they sought refuge in the Rockies, far beyond the United States borders in unsettled territory. Their civil rights leader is not Martin Luther King, Jr, but Brigham Young, who brought them to the sanctuary of the Salt Lake Valley.

Lindy E.
Belinda E.4 years ago

@Law M.: please post sources. If your allegations are true, we need to know about it, but it is very easy to post charges like this without substantiation. Please post links so others can check them out and post confirmation of what you say.

Mary M.
Mary M.4 years ago

What is going on in Utah? Have they drunk the Kool-Aid? Honoring a man of peace - Rev.Martin Luther King has nothing to do with women and abortion rights. I truly think they are just tryint to defeat license plates with MLK on it because he was black. They are still many racist out there all over the country. The man was for peace, let's be civilized for a change, and honor someone who was willing to get equal rights for the underpriviledged in this country.

Dennis Deal
Dennis D.4 years ago

Yes the GOP getting it all wrong as usual.

Maureen Heartwood

Anu R.: Dr Martin Luther King Jr did have a job. He was a Baptist minister. He was also never involved with the Black Panthers, and never incited anyone to riot, speaking out for peaceful resistance. Your information about him is completely incorrect.

Lea J.
Lea Johnson4 years ago


Lea J.
Lea Johnson4 years ago

@ Anu R.: You obviously no nothing about the civil rights movement, or any other push for human rights, including women's rights. We women did not get the right to vote by sitting around and looking pretty. You don't know anything about what the situation was like at the time of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s efforts. I, too, was raised in the South. I clearly remember the Ku Klux Klan meetings and actually witnessed one of their public cross burnings as a child. I remember, as a child, seeing the articles in the newspapers showing burnt crosses in public places, and in yards of certain individuals. In 1966, I made friends at school with a black girl my age (about 9 yrs.). I'll never forget the look of abject fear on her face when I asked her to come to my house. Did laws stop lynchings? No. Lynchings went on well into the 70's, and later. Black panthers? Who can blame them for fighting back? You need to walk a mile in another's shoes before judging them, AND you need to do your homework before sputing of your rather thoughtless opinion.

Mackenzie K.
Mackenzie K.4 years ago

Yes, heaven forbid they fund human rights.