Minnesota revoked and is taking possession of car license plates that read “FMUSLMS,” according to a news release from the office of Gov. Mark Dayton.
The unindentified owner was also due for some public scolding from Dayton: “I am appalled that this license plate was issued by the State of Minnesota,” he said in a statement. “It is offensive, and the person who requested it should be ashamed. That prejudice has no place in Minnesota.”
Dayton also asked the Department of Public Safety, which administers car registration, to review its policies to prevent other instances of bigotry from showing up on license plates.
The plate was obtained through a registrar’s office in Foley and was reviewed by the Driver and Vehicle Services Division, part of the normal process for personalized plates. The Department of Public Safety apologized for issuing the plate.
The incident comes amid a number of high profile instances of hostility shown toward Muslims in Minnesota, especially in the St. Cloud area.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations' Ibrahim Hooper said this is not the first time bigoted license plates have shown up around the country, calling the phenomenon a "symptom of the unfortunate mainstreaming of Islamophobia in our society."
With reporting by Benjamin Farniok.