Behold, The State of Ohio's Brand New Hideous License Plate

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine unveiled the state's new standard license plate in a press conference Thursday morning. It's the first time Ohio has updated its license plate design since 2013, and boy does the new one suck ass!

There are two immediately identifiable (and pretty rudimentary) flaws: First, the busy, multi-colored landscape design will make the license plate letters difficult to make out in inclement weather. Second, and just as importantly, the plates aren't recognizable as Ohio plates! The word "Ohio" will only appear in the small state-shaped box at the top, in a thin, hand-scrawled font. Yuck! What an unforced error! 

My personal preference is for more old-school, simplistic designs.
But man.

The license plate should not be a painting. It's not a freaking postage stamp. And as others have noted, an image that reflects the anodyne observation that a state has both urban areas and rural areas sure doesn't evoke much pride. Ditto the ridiculous "Birthplace of Aviation" tagline that has appeared on the state's license plates for decades, as if anyone in Ohio feels the remotest connection to this marginal piece of history. (The Wright Brothers' first successful flight was in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.) 

Ultimately who cares — and maybe the heinous design will make a few  hundred or so irregular motorists throw up their hands and go car-free — but the artistic incompetence of the state and its cities remain a daily horror show.

The plates will be available, per DeWine, by the end of the year. 

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Sam Allard

Sam Allard is the Senior Writer at Scene, in which capacity he covers politics and power and writes about movies when time permits. He's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and the NEOMFA at Cleveland State. Prior to joining Scene, he was encamped in Sarajevo, Bosnia, on an...
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