The Washington Redskins trademark dispute seemingly came out of nowhere, with a letter from Democratic senators seemingly getting the ball running. But it turns out that a Navajo woman named Amanda Blackhorse and four other plaintiffs were the people who convinced the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) that the team’s name Redskins was “disparaging” to Native Americans everywhere.
In a related report by The Inquisitr, it is claimed that Redskins owner Daniel Snyder will feel pressure to accept the demands for a name change because the lack of a Redskins trademark will cause them to lose money. But on the political side, even the ACLU is claiming it is wrong to take away the Redskins trademark, and others point out how the dispute puts other sports teams with potentially “disparaging” names in the crosshairs of the PC thought police, especially the notably red-tinged Chief Wahoo of Cleveland Indians. Precisely because many feel this is a case of Democratic political correctness gone out of control, it has been suggested that any Redskins name change should consider the Washington Tea Party as an option.
Recently, there has been a slew of reports claiming that the USPTO received zero public complaints before the Redskins trademark ruling this past July 18. For example, one report from Weasel Zippers (I’m not making this up) wrote:
“Politicians, including President Obama, have waded into the team name controversy, with many saying the team should change its name. But despite widespread media attention and a legal fight that goes back more than a decade, the USPTO recently acknowledged there’s hardly been an avalanche of public complaints filed with the agency. In fact, the agency doesn’t have any record of correspondence from the public about the Redskins’ name — expressing sentiments one way or another — prior to the board’s June 18 ruling.”
But even CBS has made similar reports:
“The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, with whom the case was filed, recently informed the Washington Times, in conjunction with the Freedom of Information Act, that of the 13 pages of records outlining any forms of communications with Congress or the public, there is no record of correspondence from the public complaining about the Redskins name prior to the board’s June ruling it was ‘derogatory.’ To be sure, neither was there any request submitted in defense of the team’s name. Such findings would either suggest that name controversy is perhaps more a conversation among media rather than the public, or the process through which such requests and/or complaints be made is not readily made available to the public.”
Now a report from WMICentral.com claims the “Trademark Trial and Appeal board said that evidence presented by Kayenta resident Amanda Blackhorse and four other plaintiffs” was the reason the Washington Redskins trademark was lost. And based up on previous interviews, it seems that Blackhorse would like all other sports team names with Native American names to be changed:
“I believe any professional sports team, like the Braves, the Blackhawks, and the Cleveland Indians—Chief Wahoo is one of the most racist cartoons out there—shouldn’t be using Native American mascots. There is a culture in sports where people go to games and have fun, but also to make fun of or yell at mascots, because they’re not human. You see people in war paint or doing the tomahawk chop and saying, ‘Scalp him.’ If you have Native Americans in that position, you’re opening up our culture to ridicule.’That’s where I have a problem with all this. Whether your intent is to harm people with a name or not, you have no control over what happens during those games. What happens in those games is ludicrous. I can’t believe that people cannot see this.”
Do you agree with Amanda Blackhorse that the Washington Redskins name change should be forced because the word is “disparaging” to Native Americans?