Is there a point where the “P.C. Police” are satisfied? Are there ever “enough” rules governing the jokes we tell, the mascots of sports teams, or the symbols on city seals? Or should we want a society as non-offensive as the American college campus? George Will, Washington Post Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist, imagines what an idyllic politically correct universe would look like.
Jay Busbee reports: The NFL has fined Marshawn Lynch $20,000 for his post-touchdown crotch grab in the NFC Championship, and more fines could be forthcoming if Lynch decides to continue his tradition of not talking to reporters.
“Johnny Manziel was hit with a $12,000 fine for flipping a bird at the Washington Redskins in preseason.”
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the NFL is also considering fining Lynch significantly more than the $50,000 for each of the past two seasons for not talking to the media. Lynch again declined to speak on Sunday after the NFC Championship.
“Kansas City’s Travis Kelce was fined $11,025 for a gesture that we really can’t even describe here…”
Lynch, along with the rest of the Seahawks, is slated for media availability on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday of next week. If he decides to go with his usual repeat-a-single-phrase routine, the Super Bowl trip could end up being a significant hit to his wallet. Read the rest of this entry »
— Steve Krakauer (@SteveKrak) September 10, 2014
Regulatory adventurism–an arm of government being misused for a political, narrow, misguided agenda–naturally raises legal questions. Can you imagine so much effort on the part of a tyrannical minority of activists about a ruling that most Americans, and most native Americans think is a pointless solution to an imaginary problem?
Yesterday’s decision from the Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) to cancel the trademark protections of the Washington Redskins professional football team, ruling that the word “redskins” is disparaging to Americans descended from indigenous people instead of immigrants, has sparked an energetic conversation raising serious legal and constitutional issues.
“To be clear: the federal government is not banning anyone from using the term ‘redskins.’”
Trademark law permits PTO to reject trademark protection to terms that PTO finds disparaging. Specifically, PTO may deny trademark registration under 15 U.S.C. § 1052 when a term, “consists of or comprises immoral, deceptive, or scandalous matter; or matter which may disparage or falsely suggest a connection with persons, living or dead, institutions, beliefs, or national symbols, or bring them into contempt, or disrepute.”
“…Instead, PTO is saying they no longer have the right to use the term exclusively to retain all financial benefits from its use.”
Lawyers for the Redskins argued that the trademark is (1) old and (2) well used, and (3) has tremendous financial value as a brand name. And one judge on the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board dissented from the decision to revoke the Redskins’ longstanding trademark protection. Read the rest of this entry »