Wash. Weighs Bill Ordering 'Drunk Driver' Plates

'Scarlet letter' measure divides legislators
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 12, 2008 5:32 PM CST
Washington State Senator Mike Carrell.   (www.leg.wa.gov)
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(Newser) – Washington state is considering a measure that would require convicted drunken drivers to use fluorescent-yellow license plates for 1 year after they regain the right to drive, the Seattle Times reports. The state senator behind the bill argues that the shame factor is a "very large deterrent," and says the plates would warn other motorists they are near a potential danger.

Not everyone agrees. “I don't think this is going to solve anything,” said another legislator. “What if a man committed a drunken-driving offense, but he and his wife have only one car?” Mothers Against Drunk Driving agrees, saying it's “not into shunning”—the group favors sobriety checkpoints and breathalyzer ignition locks.