Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Lawmaker Tries To Ban Naked Lady Mudflaps

PHOENIX -- It's still going to be legal in Arizona for trucks to have splash guards with racist terms and silhouettes of naked women.

The state House on Thursday rejected a Democratic amendment that would have banned splash guards with images that are "obscene or hateful."

Tempe Democrat Ed Ableser sponsored the amendment. He said he'd seen a splash guard that used a derogatory term for black children and said he wanted to make sure that people with hateful motives didn't inflict them on others.

Democratic Rep. Theresa Ulmer of Yuma supported the amendment and said it fit with lawmakers' other efforts to crack down on pornography and sexual predators.

"I personally am tired of explaining to my 11-year-old son why they (women) are depicted on mudflaps , but not all women are 36Ds. He's very confused by that," Ulmer said. "But seriously, this is about family values -- what are we going to send out as a message to our children."

Republican Rep. Andy Biggs of Gilbert opposed the amendment. He said it probably violated First Amendment protections for free speech and that "hateful" isn't defined by law.

Ableser's amendment, rejected on a 31-19 roll call vote, would have been added to a bill (HB2316) sought by the Arizona Trucking Association to change Arizona's height requirement for rear fender splash guards. The bill was given preliminary approval and now awaits a formal House vote.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press.

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