No, but every law has to, at least in theory be constitutional.
States rights also apply to matters of public decency.
Yes. But, you implied that there were separate laws for "distasteful". I'm only saying that the same laws are being applied. No one is creating anything new, or separate. The USPTO isn't calling saying that the Redskins broke any law, only that the USPTO is no longer going to register the mark.
That's different than having a separate law for distasteful folk.
Also I think you equate having the right, and doing whats right. I'm not arguing their power, just their use of it given their mandate.
In this particular instance I do. And here only because it doesn't keep the Redskins from using their mark.
The only question for me is "do they have the RIGHT to reverse THEIR decision to register a mark"? Yeah, they do.
Is it RIGHT for them to reverse their decision? I don't know. But, again, if they choose, and give reason, then what makes it wrong?
They can call themselves whatever they want to call themselves, but the USPTO is under no obligation to register whatever they want to call themselves.
At the very least I would encourage you to read the article in the second link Tim posted initially.
Here's a quote from it:
The ruling to cancel the trademark registrations does NOT strip the team of its trademark rights or its ability to stop unauthorized parties from using the Redskins marks.
The Redskins have acquired what are called common law trademark rights. These are trademark rights that arise by virtue of the use of the mark in the marketplace. By "use", I mean things like jersey sales and the mark appearing in TV broadcasts and online.
And here's the key: common law trademark rights are enforceable and the Redskins could rely on them to stop a third party from making unauthorized use of its marks.
The USPTO deciding that they no longer want the mark registered really has no effect whatsoever for the Redskins.
Many companies, brands, etc. survive and even thrive without a trademark registration solely because of common law trademarks.
You're acting like there's this big travesty against the Redskins, when they get to keep going with business as usual if they so choose.
No, what I in fact do think is that a government agency is exceeding their mandate to apply pressure to it's citizenry in order to enforce some bureaucrats notion of political correctness..
Again, I disagree. There have been several cases where people wanted to trademark what the USPTO considers "scandalous" words or phrases, and the courts have upheld that the USPTO has the right to deny those registrations.
So, reversing their decision isn't any different. They have the right AND the authority to do just that. The courts have said as much, so they can't be exceeding their mandate.
If this is true, why only the Redskins, seems a little less than even handed given how many sports teams have Native American Mascots, names and motifs.
Probably because the USPTO considers a mark that solely refers to skin color to be "scandalous", and none of those other registered marks refer to any skin color.
They are using the threat of financial loss to apply pressure..
Again, because of common law trademarks, they are under no threat of ANY financial loss by losing the registration.
I think they were already registered, and if the owners intent was to convey the franchises ethos in their choice of branding, then yes it is a free speech issue as well as a free market issue. .
No, it's not, because the government isn't saying that they can't call the team the Redskins. The government is ONLY saying that the government won't allow the name to be registered.
They can continue calling it whatever they want to call it. How is it a freedom of speech issue if the USPTO isn't telling them to change the name???
Your biggest disconnect is thinking might makes right. Again having the right and doing whats right are not the same thing. Speed traps, redistribution of wealth, allowing investment banks to write the legislature that governs them, allowing double digit profit increases quarterly for insurance companies while mandating every citizen to have medical insurance, debtors prisons, amongst many thing are apparently legal, and so then in theory constitutional. Are you O.K. with those things as well?
No, I don't think might makes right.
But, if I want a certain entity to recognize me, then it only makes sense that I conform to their standards of recognition. And if their standards change over time, and I no longer fit their standards, I have a choice to change or move on.
The Redskins don't have to have a registered trademark in order to keep their name. That's what I think you're missing.