News

N.J. To Allow ‘ATHE1ST’ License Plate After Worker Labeled It ‘Offensive’

President Of American Atheists Filed Appeal Over Denial
David Silverman, president of American Atheists. he was briefly denied his request for a vanity license plate reading 'ATHE1ST' but New Jersey has since overruled the worker who labeled it offiensive. (credit: Twitter/David Silverman)

David Silverman, president of American Atheists. he was briefly denied his request for a vanity license plate reading ‘ATHE1ST’ but New Jersey has since overruled the worker who labeled it offiensive. (credit: Twitter/David Silverman)

TRENTON, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) – New Jersey has approved a request from a national atheist group’s president for a license plate with the word atheist after a brief flap.

The Motor Vehicle Commission said Thursday a clerk had wrongly told David Silverman of New Jersey-based American Atheists Inc. he couldn’t use the word on his plate.

Spokeswoman Elyse Coffey said the clerk had exceeded her authority.

Silverman says the clerk told him on Monday his proposed plate was offensive, which he called “outrageously discriminatory.”

Custom plates with language deemed offensive are prohibited. Coffey says it was determined there was “nothing offensive” about it.

Silverman’s plate will read “ATHE1ST” because the MVC said “atheist” spelled with an “i” was taken. It’s on an old license plate hanging in Silverman’s office.

You May Also Be Interested In These Stories

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)