The Washington Redskins have asked the Supreme Court to review their appeal of a federal judge’s July ruling that upheld the cancellation of their trademark. But there’s a catch: the team only wants the high court to consider its case if it takes up a similar one involving a band called “The Slants.”
In December, a federal appeals court ruled that a provision of the 1946 Lanham Act, which holds that trademarks could be cancelled if they “may disparage … persons, living or dead, institutions, beliefs, or national symbols, or bring them into contempt, or disrepute,” was an unconstitutional violation of the First Amendment. That ruling came about after the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) had rejected a trademark for the Oregon-based band because it felt that “The Slants” disparaged Asian Americans. » Read More
For an extended story, see Washington Post print edition, April 27, 2016, p. B5.