My coworker recently had his front license plate stolen off his car, which made me run out to my car and make sure mine was still there, because I never look. That got me thinking. And when I start thinking, it generally turns into a blog post. Sorry. That means there’s nowhere to hide.
Having lived my entire auto-owning life in Florida until recently, I’m used to having only one license plate—the one on the back. It was quite the culture shock, moving across the country and having to put a plate on the front of the car as well.
Honestly, front plates have never made much sense to me. I mean, if someone is committing a crime, aren’t they generally driving away from you? If the criminal is coming at you, chances are you’re too busy getting out of the way to take note of his plate number. (Unless it’s imprinted backward on your forehead, and at that point you would have other things to worry about.) You’d also think that while having two plates would give young boys twice as much to hang on their bedroom walls, it would also be twice as expensive for the states in question.
So I did a lazy Google search, and learned quite a bit. According to Cars.com, this country only has 19 one-plate states, so there I was, in the minority all that time without realizing it. Go figure.
And it seems that front plates actually save states money, because they get a lot of revenue from catching folks on camera who are running red lights. They also lose a lot less on automated tolls, because if the sun glare makes the plate hard to read on the back, there’s always the front. The same with people who try to sneak out of parking garages. I guess I never thought of these petty criminals because it would never occur to me to do these things myself.
The main gripe the general public seems to have with front plates is that they make their front bumpers look all ugly. I suppose that aesthetics would be a concern for those who spend as much on their vehicle as I spent on my first house, but for me, that has never really been much of an issue. I will never look at a car as a significant investment. It’s just the thing that gets me from point A to point B.
So, just consider me to be a public service. I sit here and think and write about unimportant stuff so you don’t have to. You’re welcome.