Prohibited Plates

Forbidden words on cars


If you want a personalized license plate in Maryland, you shouldn't bother asking for DAAAMN. GAY and LESBIAN are out too, and so are COP and CIA. And don't even think about KILLER, MURDER1, or GOPOSTL. They're all on the state's constantly updated "objectionable plate list," along with more than 4,600 others.

The Baltimore Sun acquired the current version of the list in August and posted a sampling of the banned words online. Broadly speaking, you can't get a term on your plate that's meant to deceive people (so no MAYOR or FEDCOP), that alludes to something illegal (so no MAFIA or DEALER), that is sexual or scatalogical (so no DOWNLO or BEDWETR), or that, as the paper put it, conveys "messages about a group's race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation or disability" (so no ARYAN or NAACP).

To see more of the prohibited plates, go to The most creative of the lot is probably unknown. I don't mean I'm not sure: I mean the word UNKNOWN is banned too.