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Cressman v. Thompson, — F.3d —, 2015 WL 4620466 (10th Cir. August 4, 2015)

Aug 4, 2015

The court rejected a First-Amendment compelled speech claim over the Oklahoma standard license plate which depicts a Native American shooting an arrow towards the sky. After a bench trial, the district court concluded that a reasonable person would not understand the license plate image to convey the pantheistic message to which appellant objected, and therefore that appellant was not compelled to speak. The Tenth Circuit affirmed, reasoning that appellant’s lack of objection to the only message that a reasonable observer of the license plate would discern (relating to Oklahoma’s Native American History) was fatal to his claim.