UPDATE: Washington Redskins Lose Battle to Keep their Name

Originally posted 2018-07-12 5:32:44

Aurelia Mitchell Durant | www.amdlawgroup.com

The AMD LAW Blog has been following the NFL’s Washington Redskins fight to retain the name “Redskins” amid Native American dissent arguing that the name is offensive.  However, the Redskins suffered a loss in a recent ruling that threatens to cancel their trademark registration once all federal appeals have been exhausted.

However, the U.S. Supreme Courts ruling in Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc. held that a state is entitled to reject content that it deems offensive to the general public; specifically in this instance license plates with the confederate flag were proposed.  The publicly displayed nature of license plates was deemed government speech. The Supreme Courts ruling in the Walker case can be viewed as analogous to the issue in the Washington Redskins matter should the name of the football team be considered government speech.  Interesting legal banter . . . we will be watching!




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Culture and Trademarks: A Closer Look at the Washington Redskins

Martin, J. and Tatum, S., July 8, 2015, Court Rules Against Redskins Trademark Registration, http://www.cnn.com/2015/07/08/politics/redskins-lose-trademark-battle-in-federal-court/

Walker v. Texas Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans, Inc.  http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/14-144_758b.pdf

Image: http://guestofaguest.com/washington-dc/sports/meet-washington-redskins-hottest-players