It’s been around for 82 years, but it turns out that the name was disparaging and illegal all along!
The United States Patent and Trademark Office has canceled the Washington Redskins trademark registration, calling the football team’s name “disparaging to Native Americans.”
The landmark case, which appeared before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, was filed on behalf of five Native Americans. It was the second time such a case was filed.
No word yet on whether this will force a change to the name. If the team sticks with the name, fighting knockoffs will become well-nigh impossible.
If the fans were really offended by the name, the fans could have expressed that — and it would have changed. It didn’t take the NBA long to deal with Donald Sterling, and we didn’t need government to get involved — the NBA acted quickly because failure to do so would have had immediate market repercussions for the franchise and the league.
I don’t want to say that federal agencies simply do Obama’s bidding, but he didn’t like the name, you know.
He also said the IRS scandal was made up, and sure enough, Republicans have failed to find a single Lois Lerner smoking gun email.
Coming next: that grinning Cleveland Indians logo.
UPDATE: SPQR reminds us of the First Amendment implications here. I agree with him that this decision violates the First Amendment. This is unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination in a limited public forum. More on that in a future post.