The Washington Redskins just had their trademark revoked because it was raaaaaacist:
The NFL’s ‘Skins have actually had their mark canceled on “disparagement” grounds once before, in 1999, but that decision ended up being overturned in federal court on a procedural technicality. A group of Native Americans decided to have a second go at a suit a few years ago, and now here we are. They had to show not only that the team’s name is disparaging, but that it was disparaging at the time the trademark was granted. …
The team’s intent in using the name doesn’t matter. It’s what a “substantial composite” of the group implicated by the mark perceives. Follow the last link and scroll down to page 81 for the dissent, which argues that the historical evidence is simply too equivocal to find that “Redskins” was disparaging when the mark was first granted. (Arguably true!) The ruling doesn’t mean the team can’t use the name, just that they can’t stop unlicensed manufacturers from using the name on their own merchandise. Soon you’ll be able to sell your very own ‘Skins gear if you like, and Dan Snyder will lose tens or even hundreds of millions of bucks in the process. But not just yet: An appeal will follow, as it did in 1999, which means the trademark will remain in effect for years to come while the litigation plays out. Assuming, of course, Snyder doesn’t drop “Redskins” first.
Here’s a thought with which I agree:
The weird thing about “Redskins” is that it’s so closely associated with football and the team in the public’s mind, I think, that over time the sports meaning has completely overtaken the racially derogatory meaning. If someone walked up to you today and said “What do you think of the Redskins?”, you’d assume without a second thought that he was asking you about the NFC East, not casually slurring Native Americans. Hard to argue that the word’s “disparaging” in that context.
Then again, common sense never wins out over political correctness, especially not for a liberal. Here’s another way to put this action into context:
I want you to imagine the federal government eliminating your private property rights due to the interpretation of political correctness by five people, or a very tiny minority of people. The tiny minority of people are ostensibly, they say, offended by something that you own. Imagine an agency of the federal government, without any proper adjudication before any sort of court, tribunal, or what have you, just comes along and, on their own whim, decides to eliminate your private property rights. Because of interpretation of political correctness, because they’re liberals, because they’re statists and authoritarians and assigned to them that kind of sweeping power. …
The Patent and Trademark Office simply eliminated their right of the Redskins to own that trademark. It doesn’t mean they have to change their name. What it means is that if — and there will be a series of appeals on this. The Redskins will not go down without a war dance. After all the appeals, if this ruling holds, it means that anybody can use the Redskins trademark and logo for anything, that the Washington Redskins do not own their name. That’s what this ruling means. They don’t have the right because some people are offended. It can be spread around. If you … wanted to start selling caps or T-shirts with the word “Redskins” or “Washington Redskins” and use their logo, you could, because they don’t have the right to own it, even though they do own it.
This isn’t the first time liberals have done this:
Imagine the federal government taking away your health insurance and your doctor. That’s what millions of Americans are dealing with, many more millions to come. Imagine the federal government shutting down coal-fired electric plants on a whim in the name of a hoax, global warming. And as a result, driving up your electricity bills to the point that you have to make life-altering changes in your lifestyle to be able to afford them. And about that, I want to issue you another warning, ladies and gentlemen.
I remember back in 1997 when the Sierra Club targeted SUVs as main contributors to global warming. I warned you that there was going to be an all-out assault and increasing amount of momentum aimed at SUVs and their owners and an attempt to stigmatize those people and their vehicles, make them feel guilty and get rid of them.
This is how it starts: with a high profile thing, and where only a few really want to grind the axe. Twenty years ago everyone laughed when SUVs were first targeted, but now look – the liberal Left is actively working to cut down the size and weight of vehicles via ridiculously high fuel efficiency requirements, paying special attention to trucks and SUVs. Whether by stigma or by financial means, they’ve had an impact (though fortunately, not a tremendous one, as trucks and SUVs remain hugely popular). Regardless, Obama is now squarely targeting the coal industry, and they’ve been hammering oil and natural gas for years. Now that those policies are taking effect, we’re seeing the economic impact – higher prices on everything from food to medicine to transportation.
But look at the broader perspective. Where does it end? What about the Kansas City Chiefs, Atlanta Braves, or Florida Seminoles? And what about all the other variations like Indians, Arrows, Hawks, Red Raiders, Redmen, and so on? Are those next? What about other somewhat controversial mascots like the Runnin’ Rebels, Pirates, Fighting Irish, Arabs, Screaming Eagles, Warriors, and on and on and on? Tell me: once we begin dictating what someone can or cannot do with their private property like this, where does it stop?
Quite simply, it doesn’t.
This is how liberals work. This is how they evolve from noble-sounding good intentions to outright tyranny. It’s not enough that they stop doing something, their mission is to prevent everyone from doing that thing. At all costs. That’s how they justify violations like this incident with the Redskins’ trademark. No, it doesn’t force a name change, but it does do enormous economic damage to the owner of the franchise. That’s essentially coercion, if not outright extortion, but it’s justified because in the liberal’s mind the more egregious violation is that of the political correctness variety. That’s the end result of failing to adhere to a principle that can be applied justly to everyone.
Today it’s the billionaire owner of an NFL franchise, but what happens when it’s something you hold dear, like your business, your health care, your school, or your family? When policies are dictated by political whims that shift and swirl, tyranny reigns under a thin veneer of noble intentions. As with every liberal cause that is dictated by political correctness, there are no hard limitations, no boundaries, no restraints. There is only the whim of the day, and it is inevitable that those whims will one day put every man, woman, and child in the cross hairs. If we cannot recognize such tyrannical overreach in its early stages and stand up against it — even when it’s against a billionaire NFL owner — then who will stand up against such tyranny when it comes for us?
There’s my two cents.