POLL: Do You Treat Local Drivers Differently?

Middletown Patch editor admits she is guilty of "home-state plate discrimination". Do you look at the license plate before you make a decision to allow a car into traffic?


Last week, in the peak of beach traffic, I waited on the on the corner of Wave Avenue, to make the dreaded left turn onto Aquidneck Avenue.

I tried to make eye contact with fellow drivers, pleading with the tanned beach-goers to let me turn.  There was a gas leak at that had just impacted at least 500 Middletown residents.  The only obstacle that stood in my way of delivering that news, was a long line of cars from New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut and New York.

Not one appeared concerned about my left turn or Middletown’s breaking gas leak news. 

Finally! A blue Jeep Wrangler with a Rhode Island license plate and a surfboard secured on its top waved me in.  

It realized that I might not be alone.  Was the driver of the Wranger as guilty as I am of home-state plate discrimination?

If an impatient driver honks, I can only expect the driver is from New York or New Jersey.  When a car cuts me off, I am not surprised that the Massachusetts sterotype is, once again, supported.

I will always try to wave in a Rhode Island driver with a smile.  I begrudgingly tolerate the different set of road rules that the out-of-state plate drivers sometimes follow, but admittedly, I favor Rhode Island plates when it comes time to make a decision to let a car into traffic.

Are you guilty of home-state plate discrimination?  Do you find that you check the license before you decide to let someone into traffic? Tell us your stories in the comments!

John M August 02, 2012 at 06:53 PM
yes I tell out of town drivers if they like roller coasters,to drive on Spring St and Broadway.
Bill the 1st August 03, 2012 at 09:52 AM
I only let people in where is doesn't otherwise affect the flow of traffic. I find it annoying when someone does something unexpected (considerate) and gives way when they shouldn't.
Sunny Shores August 03, 2012 at 01:08 PM
I don't care what state their plate is from, I look to see if they're smoking. If they are I don't let them in, I don't want to breathe second hand smoke through my car vents.
Newby August 03, 2012 at 01:17 PM
I think we should be nicer to the tourists. It can be difficult to drive around here. BUT, I reserve the right to not be considerate to the out-of-towner who speeds to the beach, or tries to cut everyone off while talking on their cellphone or has their music so loud that my car shakes. The confused family or harried mom, or older couple who made the mistake of thinking they could take a left across traffic - sure, be nice.
charlie vaillancourt August 09, 2012 at 02:44 PM
I voted NO because tourism is the second best employer to the Navy! Even if you think it doesn't affect you, at least think of your neighbors, restaurants, hotels etc. Our economy is bad enough, don't look a gift horse in the mouth.


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