Redskins owner says he's thrilled with ruling

Sept. 11 Detention Lawsuit Rejected by US Supreme Court

The Washington Redskins' name is commercial speech and isn't the kind of free expression protected by the First Amendment, the Obama administration told a federal court this week in defending a ruling that has stripped the football team of trademark protections. He's often noted that the band and its its name have strong support in the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities, unlike the Washington Redskins, now engaged in their own legal battle over the team's trademark.

In that case, the Asian-American rock band "The Slants" were denied protection under a provision of the 1946 Lanham Trademark Act that prohibits trademarks that may "disparage....or bring into contemp [t] or disrepute" any persons "living or dead".

The Slants went to court after being denied trademark registration for a name they chose as an act of "reappropriation" - adopting a term used by others to disparage Asian Americans and wearing it as a badge of pride. The team filed a legal challenge to a 2014 decision by U.S. Patent and Trademark Office tribunal canceling its trademarks as disparaging to Native Americans.

In 2015, Tam won a case in the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

In a unanimous 8-0 decision, the Supreme Court said that clause was unconstitutional. While he did state in his opinion that the government "has an interest in preventing speech expressing ideas that offend", he did so by definitely stating that these cases do not apply to what is a narrow application.

"After an excruciating legal battle that has spanned almost eight years, we're beyond humbled and thrilled to have won this case at the Supreme Court", they said in a statement.

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The council also seeks to boost the cyber security of USA government IT systems and wants to learn from private-sector practices. The embattled CEO of Uber Travis Kalanick cut ties with the White House in an attempt to reduce public criticism.

The case was closely watched for the impact it would have on a separate dispute involving the Redskins, who are owned by Dan Snyder.

The Supreme Court agreed to hear The Slants' case previous year, after a lower court declared the anti-disparagement clause in trademark law unconstitutional in 2015.

The larger ramifications from this case are that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office can not refuse trademarks it views as offensive.

Losing federal protection did not mean the team could no longer use the term "Redskins". The protections include blocking the sale of counterfeit merchandise and working to pursue a brand development strategy. He sought to register the name with the trademark office.

The ruling is another major setback for Native Americans who have fought to change the team's name for almost 50 years.

But contrary to the questions at play in the Redskins' case, Tam also praised the decision specifically as a win for minorities, saying, "We know that to truly protect the most marginalized members of society, we absolutely must protect and expand the First Amendment".

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