Vanity plates are nothing new, and it isn’t uncommon to see one or two adorning the tailgates of passing cars on a daily basis. These plates must go through rigorous screening at the DMV to ensure that no one is displaying anything offensive or profane.
However, one man from Missouri was out for a drive recently, when he was suddenly floored by what he saw inscribed on a nearby car’s license plate. The man he saw driving the other vehicle was a Muslim man that had the letters “JIHAD1” proudly scrawled across the back of his car.
Absolutely outraged, the man wrote to the local news station, KMOV. After doing some investigating, the news station tracked down the owner of the vehicle who explained to them that “Jihad” was the name of their son, and that was the reason they had it inscribed on their plate.
The news station also interviewed Faizan Syed, the executive director of the St. Louis Chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations, and he stated that “[The name] Jihad is very common and it doesn’t mean Holy War. It means someone who is struggling, so when you name your kid Jihad, it means someone who is going to struggle to be better.”
Syed went on to say that “Jihad is very common and it doesn’t mean Holy War. It means someone who is struggling, so when you name your kid Jihad, it means someone who is going to struggle to be better.”
According to KMOV’s Website, a similar plate was rejected by the DMV back in 2009 that spelled out “J1HAD.” So far no explanation from the State has been given as to why “JIHAD1” is acceptable, but “J1HAD” is not.