In a surprising 8-0 decision, the Supreme Court issued a ruling in favor of the First Amendment. It is a huge slap in the face to PC liberals. The left has been on a warpath for years against what they consider ‘offensive ‘language’ and hate speech, seeking to ban certain terms of their choosing. But today, the Supreme Court ruled that free speech cannot be picked apart based on subjective leanings:
“In an 8-0 ruling (only new Justice Neil Gorsuch did not participate), the court ruled in favor of rock band “The Slants,” which had been denied trademark protection on the grounds that their name constituted disparaging speech.
“The same reasoning was also used to revoke some trademarks held by the Washington Redskins football team. That case is currently in appeal, with the appeal put on hold to await the Supreme Court’s verdict in The Slants case.
“Justice Samuel Alito wrote the opinion, in which he indicated that the act of registering a trademark should not be considered government speech, and is protected by the First Amendment.”
Far left activists have fought the Redskins for decades over their mascot. They won a decision cancelling their trademark and it put the team on the ropes. But with this ruling, their PC quest seems to be coming to an end. The most poignant argument offered in the opinion was really powerful:
Alito wrote: “For example, if trademarks represent government speech, what does the Government have in mind when it advises Americans to “make.believe” (Sony), “Think different” (Apple), “Just do it” (Nike), or “Have it your way” (Burger King)? Was the Government warning about a coming disaster when it registered the mark “EndTime Ministries”?
This particular case did not involve the Redskins specifically. However, their case was waiting to be heard after this ruling. It is highly likely the U.S. Court of Appeals will use the ‘Slants’ case as precedent and re-institute their trademark. In the highly unlikely scenario they do not, the Redskins now know how the Supreme Court will rule if they had to take it that far.
In Lee v Tam, SCOTUS affirms and holds that disparagement provision of the trademark laws is unconstitutional.
— SCOTUSblog (@SCOTUSblog) June 19, 2017
Here is a link to the opinion.