The U.S. Patent Office ruled that the Washington Redskins name is “disparaging of Native Americans” and federal trademarks for the name have to be canceled.
The 2-1 ruling came Wednesday after a campaign to change the name gained momentum over the past year. The team doesn’t immediately lose trademark protection and is allowed to retain it during an appeal.
Redskins owner Dan Snyder has refused to change the team’s name, citing tradition, but there has been growing pressure including statements in recent months from President Barack Obama, lawmakers of both parties and civil rights groups.
Bob Raskopf, trademark attorney for the team, said he expects the ruling to be overturned on appeal.
Read the full story at FoxNews.com.
In case their legal battle proves fruitless, alternative names have been proposed…
“Washington Parasites” or “Washington Cronies” would be perfectly acceptable substitutes— Allahpundit (@allahpundit) June 18, 2014
The Washington Thinskins #NewRedskinsName— Andrea SilveЯ (@andilinks) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName the Washington Lame Ducks— Fingers Malloy (@FingersMalloy) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName Washington Red-tapes— O (@OriKeinan) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName The Washington Regulators— Zach (@the_gonzo7) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName The Community Organizers— Captain Awesome (@CaptinAwesum) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName The Washington Squirrels. Works on several levels, if you think about it.— LovecraftRipoff (@LovecraftRipoff) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName The Washington Butthurt— Dave Bartolec (@djbartolec) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName The Washington Phone & Pens— Mr. LostEmailDude (@Anewhomestar) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName Washington Bronies— Nick (@DogGilmour) June 18, 2014
The Potomic Pearl Clutchers #NewRedskinsName— Super Genius (@Crapplefratz) June 18, 2014
The Washington NotThatTheresAnythingWrongWithThats #NewRedskinsName— John Groves (@jfgroves) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName The Washington Carneys *they'll never win but they'll do a hell of a spin on why they lost*— MushKiloAlphaTango (@MushKat) June 18, 2014
The Washington Plead the Fifths #NewRedskinsName— Carlton Hinds (@methuselaschild) June 18, 2014
Washington Pantywaists #NewRedskinsName— Jonathan Smith (@JamesEnsor) June 18, 2014
#NewRedskinsName Washington Overreach— Dave Gillispie (@DavidGpie) June 18, 2014
The Washington Shut Up Racists #NewRedskinsNames— S.M (@redsteeze) June 18, 2014
18-year-old Andrew Lampart, a senior at Nonnewaug High School, said he made the discovery when he was doing research for a classroom debate on gun control in May. Lampart said he first noticed that he could not get on the web site for the National Rifle Association.
“So, I went over to the other side. And I went over on sites such as Moms Demand Action or Newtown Action Alliance and I could get on these Web sites but not the others,” Lampart said.
Lampart investigated further, by broadening his search terms to Connecticut’s political parties.
“I immediately found out that the State Democrat web site was unblocked but the State GOP web site was blocked.”
Lampart even looked at Web sites focusing on abortion issues and religion. He found that “right-to-life” groups were blocked by the public school firewall but that Planned Parenthood and Pro-Choice America were not. He also tried to get on web sites such as Christianity.com and the Vatican’s web site but both were blocked. Islam-guide.com he found, was not.
In a letter to the Woodbury Board of Education, Lampart said that he approached local superintendent Jody Goegler, who told him that some political sites needed to be blocked to prevent “hate speech” from seeping into the school. Lampart approached the school board, he said, after no action appeared to have been taken to allow more sites.
The hate speech justification has left some incensed. Bill Donohue, who heads the Catholic League, a national anti-defamation group, sent a letter of protest to the school on Wednesday.
“It is alleged that you support censoring students at Nonnewaug High School from accessing the Vatican’s website on the grounds that it promotes ‘hate speech.’ Would you please identify examples of ‘hate speech’ found on the Vatican’s website?” Donohue asked.
The controversy over the firing of Mozilla CEO Brandon Eich over his views on traditional marriage is still reverberating, with a long article at CNET.com claiming Eich’s ideas on gay marriage were already well known before he became CEO and that LGBT activists used his past as a platform for activism.
In a June 13 column, CNET.com columnist Stephen Shankland prophesied that it will take “some time” for the Mozilla community to recover from Eich’s firing. Especially hard hit was Mozilla’s claim to be a place where the First Amendment actually meant something.
Shankland points out that the attitude in Silicon Valley has shifted from one of profit and success to a blanket of politically correct oppression:
“In the old days it was, ‘Can you generate a return for shareholders?’” said Scott McNealy, who during more than two decades as CEO of Sun Microsystems espoused fiscally conservative politics and sharply libertarian views. “Now we have, ‘How do you feel about gun control, immigration, gay marriage, abortion, and big government?’”
The columnist also said that because things have become so toxic in the high-tech corridor, “few high-ranking figures in the Bay Area’s tech scene were willing to go on the record” about Eich’s firing.
Read the full article at Breitbart.com.
Flag Day represents more than the official adoption of the American flag for a Littleton man. For David Renner, his passion for flags means a battle with his homeowner’s association. Southbridge Townhomes Association has a problem with the flags he hangs outside his home. But Renner has a problem with the HOA targeting what he says is part of our collective American history.
“I love flags,” Renner says. “I love flag history.” It’s why he owns 13 flags and flies them with pride outside his townhome in the 300 block of W. Jamison Circle in Littleton. That was, until April.
“This is the first flag I got warned on, the Gadsden,” Renner said about the yellow, pre-revolutionary flag reading “Don’t Tread On Me.” So, he took it down and hung his Colorado flag. “But in May, I received a $100 fine for flying my Colorado flag,” he said. Then, on June7, came another $200 fine, for flying his Betsy Ross flag — it has 13 stars and 13 stripes. He flew it again, knowing the risk. “I may be fined again,” he said.
He received a violation letter stating his flags do not meet HOA rules. The only acceptable flag is a current United State flag with 50 stars and 13 stripes. But Renner said he’s protected by the Freedom to Display the American Flag Act of 2005. “That act uses a loose definition of the term American flag, any number of stars, any number of stripes, any size, any material, any flag that purports to be an American flag,” he said. But the HOA disagreed, and said historical U.S. flags do not make the cut.
“Do they really think I’m bringing down property values? It’s not like I’m flying an Oakland Raiders flag,” he said.
A pro-Hillary Clinton super-PAC is facing a legal fight after trying to prevent shirts, mugs and bumper stickers that play on the group’s name.
Instead of “I’m Ready for Hillary,” a Minnesota activist made a line of shirts declaring “I’m Ready for Oligarchy,” in the same style and with the same font as the super-PAC’s images. Ready for Hillary responded by ordered two online sales sites, Zazzle.com and CafePress.com, to take those down.
The Minnesota designer, Dan McCall, was previously locked in a fight with the National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security for selling shirts and mugs that used the agencies seals and said things such as “Department of Homeland Stupidity.”
The consumer interest group Public Citizen fought back against both agencies and eventually got them to drop their complaints and pay McCall’s legal fees.
Public Citizen is coming to the design creator’s defense, and accusing the super-PAC of trying to clamp down on his constitutional right to political protest.
Read the full story at The Hill.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., has promised the Senate will take up a proposed constitutional amendment this year that would radically alter the First Amendment.
The Senate resolution would allow Congress to limit fundraising and spending on election campaigns and independent political speech. Reid and others insist restricting the amount of money that may be raised and spent on political speech is not the same as limiting speech. That’s like saying that limiting the amount of newsprint a newspaper can buy does not limit its speech.
Having lost the battle at the Supreme Court, Reid and his cohorts are now pushing this constitutional amendment to reverse decisions—including Citizens United v. FEC and McCutcheon v. FEC—that protect the rights of Americans to speak their minds about elected officials and candidates and to engage in the political process.
Shutting down conservative speech certainly appears to be a motivating factor behind this push to amend the First Amendment. Reid has given many interviews and speeches on the Senate floor demonizing the Charles and David Koch for “dumping unseemly amounts of money” into politics, “rigg[ing] the system” and “trying to buy the country.” Of course, he never mentions efforts by big Democratic contributors, such as George Soros and the SEIU. Imagine the audacity of those “un-American” and “shrewd businessmen” (Reid’s words) who would back candidates and causes they believe will make America better.
Read the full article at The Foundry.
According to the Carolina Journal, in May of 2009, Steven Cooksey started a blog on which he described his ordeal with diabetes and told readers how a new diet helped him through his illness. His website explicitly informed viewers that he wasn’t a doctor or a nutritionist.
That was enough to alarm the North Carolina Board of Dietetics and Nutrition. In January of 2012, the board warned Steve that he could not give readers personal advice on diet, whether for free or for compensation, because doing so constituted the unlicensed practice of “dietetics.” And unlicensed dietetics is a misdemeanor in North Carolina.
According to a recent issue brief from the Manhattan Institute, entire sections of North Carolina’s regulatory code, even those dealing with public health, “make the violation of any of their provisions criminal.”
Cooksey, the nutrition blogger, sued the state board in federal court in May of 2012, arguing that the First Amendment protected his advice. While the suit was ultimately dismissed on the grounds that Cooksey did not suffer an injury, his case is a textbook example of overcriminalization: the use of the criminal law to target conduct that isn’t inherently wrong and that most reasonable people wouldn’t expect to be illegal in the first place.
Read the full article at The Foundry.
“The First Amendment is under attack by the New York Attorney General and, as we did with the Federal Election Commission, Citizens United will fight for our rights set forth by the U.S. Constitution,” Citizens United President David Bossie said in a statement on Wednesday.
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman demanded that Citizens United and Citizens United Foundation file their IRS Form 990, which reveals the names, addresses, and contribution amounts of top donors, with the New York State Charities Bureau in order to solicit donations for charitable purposes. Schneiderman has claimed a state regulation allows him to demand donor information from groups that spend more than $10,000 on elections in the state.
Citizens United, which won the landmark 2010 Supreme Court decision that determined that corporations’ political speech was protected under the First Amendment, filed the lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
The lawsuit seeks to block enforcement of the filing requirement on four separate grounds: 1)
On May 15, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) announced the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on June 3 on amending the U.S. Constitution to limit political speech. If ultimately adopted, it would mark the first time in American history that a constitutional amendment rescinded a freedom listed as among the fundamental rights of the American people.
The proposed amendment was introduced by Sen. Tom Udall (D-CO) as S.J.R. 19 and if ratified would become the Twenty-Eighth Amendment. It provides in part that “Congress shall have power to regulate the raising and spending of money and in-kind equivalents with respect [to] the Federal elections … [and] State elections.”
The proposed amendment includes a provision that “Nothing in this article shall be construed to grant Congress the power to abridge the freedom of the press.” So Breitbart News, The New York Times, and the mainstream media would be able to say whatever they want, but citizens and citizen groups such as the National Rifle Association could not.
But the right of Americans to fully engage in political speech is guaranteed by the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment. If S.J.R. 19 becomes part of the Constitution, it would be the first instance in which a right secured by a constitutional amendment was later scaled back.
Read the full article at Brieitbart.com.
It should be noted that every other attempt to curtail political speech was filtered through Liberal judges, bureaucrats and political appointees who applied it only to Conservatives and very rarely to Liberals.
Texas State Senator Bob Deuell (R) stands accused of attempting to coerce Salem Communications and Cumulus Dallas into censoring the First Amendment rights of Texas Right to Life by having a political ad removed under threat of legal action. The ad, paid for by Texas Right to Life, claims that Sen. Deuell “sponsored a bill to give even more power to these hospital panels over life and death for our ailing family members. Bob Deuell turned his back on life and on disabled patients.” This refers to SB303 from the 2013 Texas Legislative Session. The ploy by the Deuell campaign worked by keeping the ad off the air for about thirty-six hours at a critical point in the campaign leading into Monday’s start of early voting.
In a letter obtained by Breitbart Texas from Sen. Deuell’s attorneys George Hyde, Ross Fischer and Scott Tschirhart from the law firm Denton Navarro Rocha Bernal Hyde & Zech, P.C., the attorneys claim “These false and defamatory statements completely and totally misrepresent Senator (and Medical Doctor) Deuell’s position on Patient Protection and End of Life Legislation and completely and totally misrepresents Senate Bill 303. Moreover these statements specifically violate the Biblical admonitions against bearing false witness.”
A letter by Texas from Texas Right to Life’s attorney, Trey Trainor a partner with Beirne, Maynard & Parsons, LLP to the radios stations made the point that Deuell’s attorneys only claim one statement as allegedly being defamatory. “… Bob Deuell sponsored a bill to give even more power to these hospital panels over life and death for our ailing family members. Bob Deuell turned his back on life and on disabled patients.” Trainor pointed out that Sen. Deuell was a sponsor of SB303 during the 83rd Session of the Texas Legislature (2013) and also pointed to sections in the bill which prove the point that the bill does “give even more power” to the hospitals and doctors. Trainor said that because both of the points in the first sentence are true and accurate facts and the second sentence is purely the opinion of Texas Right to Life, no defamation exists and the radio stations should should have put the ad back on the air.
Dr. Joseph Graham, Texas Right to Life President, told Breitbart Texas, “We are very troubled by the smear tactics launched against Texas Right to Life by Bob Deuell. We used to enjoy a productive relationship with Bob Deuell, until 2007, when his commitment to the medical lobby proved to be stronger than his commitment to protect vulnerable patients.” He continued, “While Bob Deuell may oppose abortion, his efforts to expand euthanasia and give more power to hospital panels over the lives of patients disqualify him from Texas Right to Life’s support. With Obamacare on the horizon and health-care rationing on the rise, Texas must be the leader in shielding patients from futility policies and practices. Regrettably, Bob Deuell worked to pass measures that jeopardize patients, not protect them.”
Read the full story at Breitbart.com.