Court Rules Texas Can’t Ban Sale of Confederate Flag License Plates

Maya Srikrishnan, Los Angeles Times, July 15, 2014

A federal court ruled that the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles could not prohibit the sale of specialty license plates featuring an image of the Confederate flag.

The U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 2-1 on Monday that the Texas department had violated the 1st Amendment rights of members of  the Sons of Confederate Veterans group by rejecting their application for the specialty plates.

In the majority opinion, the court found that the board of the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles had “engaged in impermissible viewpoint discrimination” when it rejected the license plates in 2011.

The decision overturns a decision in April by U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks, who ruled that the state had the right to reject the plates.

The Texas attorney general’s office, which represented the department, told the Los Angeles Times on Tuesday that it would appeal the decision.

The proposed license plates feature the Sons of Confederate Veterans logo–a Confederate battle flag framed on all four sides by the words “Sons of Confederate Veterans 1896.” {snip}

“By rejecting the plate because it was offensive, the board discriminated against Texas SCV’s view that the Confederate flag is a symbol of sacrifice, independence, and Southern heritage,” Judges Edward Prado and Jennifer Elrod said.


Nine other states currently have license plates containing images of the Confederate flag,  all designed by the Sons of Confederate Veterans. In seven of these, the Tennessee-based group had to sue and win for the right to sell the plates, according to Davis. The group also has pending litigation about the license plates in Florida.

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  • MekongDelta69

    Even a stopped judiciary system gets it right once in a blue moon.

    • Luca

      Your one-a-day, feel good article.

      • JDInSanD

        Yes, but how long before there’s a specialty Mexican flag plate?

        • Ike Eichenberg

          In Texas the specialty Mexican flag plate is a forged or long expired temp tag.

          • Wholly Unconvinced

            I always thought it was ridiculous when I saw the temps that were so old the markered in dates had faded away to nothing.

  • journey

    The Civil War was never fought over blacks. There were even black slaves in Northern
    states. Besides, slavery taught the blacks a sense of work, responsibility, some self-respect, acquired some skills, etc.

    So, to beg the question, how could the Confederate flag be regarded as offensive to blacks?

    • Long Live Dixie

      There were even black slaves in Northern states.

      64 of them according to the 1860 census.

      • JDInSanD

        Was their murder rate still 8 times higher back then too?

      • journey

        The following from more research. Ah, the convenience of changing history to suit a purpose.

        “Under gradual emancipation in the North many blacks were forced into long periods of indenture or servitude. Meanwhile a steadily growing black population in the North contributed to white anxiety and intensified racial animosities.”

        “1800 census, which shows 1,488 slaves in New England.”

        “On the other hand, the paternal interest that 19th century Southern owners attempted to cultivate for their slaves was absent in the North, for the most part, and the colonies there had to resort to laws to prevent masters from simply turning their slaves out in the streets when the slaves grew old or infirm. And across the North an evident pattern emerges: the more slaves lived in a place, the wider the controls, and the more brutal the punishments for transgressions.”

        • Wholly Unconvinced

          Awesome response, and saved me the trouble of doing the same!

          • journey

            A couple of years ago, I watched Ben Still’s Money Masters video (be sure to watch the full version), there is quite a bit of information concerning the “guests” in other people’s nations. Still went into the (real) reasons for the Civil War and the assassinations (attempted and successful) of this country’s presidents. You would be interested in the information. Presently, those “guests” are financially draining Western societies dry and trying to collapse them as nations.

          • Wholly Unconvinced

            As far as the Civil War is concerned, I was lucky enough to stumble across that one some time ago, but the video definitely sounds good, and I haven’t seen it yet, so I’ll definitely give it a look. Thanks for the heads up!

        • Strider73

          When Oregon became a state in 1859, its constitution flatly prohibited blacks from living there. The Illinois legislature did the same thing by statute a few years earlier.

          For those who want actual history rather than Yankee lies, I strongly recommend The South Was Right! by James and Walter Kennedy. Amazon has it in both print and e-book format.

  • dd121

    The left has been waging a war against Southern and conservative symbols for years. It’s one of the Alensky talking points.

    • bilderbuster

      Alensky had a tribal agenda.

  • The courts allow us to win one every now and then to keep the revolt in check and make us think that we’re still a nation of laws. When it’s convenient for them the flag will be banned from all public display, along with Nazi flags.

    Texas is the same state that constantly fights FOR affirmative action in college admissions. It’s not a white-friendly state by any stretch. Be aware of that if you’re planning to move here.

  • Mark

    Just moved to NC from WA. Getting Sons of Confederate Veterans plates on both of my cars! It’s still legal here.

    • Long Live Dixie

      Are you a Southerner who ended up living in Washington State for a while?

      • Mark

        I have actually spent most of my adult life in Michigan. My heart and soul are in the South. This beautiful Flag is a symbol of rebellion of free people against the tyranny of the government.

    • trouble maker

      I have lived in NC for five years and it is in bad shape after twenty years of Democratic party control , none of the State Agencies function well due to cronyism.
      Do not have any medical procedures done in NC , check out Senate Bill 33 and you will understand why .

  • WR_the_realist

    If the only thing accomplished by showing the confederate flag is to outrage liberal totalitarians that’s a sufficient reason to fly the stars and bars.

  • propagandaoftruth

    Look at these redneck Nazis.

    Such a beautiful day. So many Nazis, lol…

    Trust me though, you’d much rather be there on the day pictured than during the occupy protests. Yes, you.

    • propagandaoftruth


      • I’d much rather fight for that one. Call me a “Neo-Copperhead”.

        • propagandaoftruth

          You’d wear that skin well. It is a beautiful banner.

  • Paleoconn

    This goes to show how traitorous and disgusting Texas politics is, when the FEDS are the ones protecting a symbol of our tradition.

  • bilderbuster

    I’m fortunate in that I admire them both and they don’t offend “most people” but for the most part only two select groups that seem to find everything empowering to Whites offensive.

  • Randall Ward

    Learning the truth about lincoln and the real history of the war for Southern independence is a well rewarded journey. The truth is the opposite of what is taught in the “history” books.