Supreme Court Rules Offensive Trademarks Are Protected

Ruffle of feathers or not, it is protected.

In a historic ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that laws forbidding registration of offensive trademarks is unconstitutionally. The Court rules that such laws limit free speech.

The court ruled 8-0 in favor of Portland, Oregon-based Asian-American dance rock band The Slants, which had been denied a trademark because the government deemed the name disparaging to people of Asian descent. The band challenged the rejection as a violation of free speech rights under the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment, winning at the appeals court level before the government appealed to the high court.

While the ruling might seem trivial, it is expected to have an effect on other high-profile cases including the case of the Washington Redskins. While some challenge that in these time being politically correct is paramount, other see the tradition. The way that things have always been and acknowledge outside fringe groups who oppose what they see as “taking things to far”.

Regardless, SCOTUS has spoken in letting America know that free speech is more than just what one side agrees with.


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