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Redskins Trademark Ruling Could Put Some Massachusetts High School Mascots In Jeopardy

The School Store at Dartmouth High School

A landmark ruling by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office yesterday may affect high school teams here in Massachusetts like the Dartmouth Indians, the Middleboro Sachems, and the Seekonk Warriors. The Patent office ruled yesterday that the Washington Redskins name was “offensive,” and therefore the team would lose their trademark protection.  The ruling may put added pressure onto some local high schools to change their mascot names.

" It always worries me when the federal government decides what is “offensive” to Americans.  I think a better, more capitalistic way to deal with these issues would be for offended people to stop supporting teams like the Washington Redskins.  "

The  ruling came unexpectedly, even though the Redskins have been encircled in controversy over their identity for some time now. While it took the NFL team by surprise, yesterday’s decision has sparked up the debate again between two very opposing sides as to the legitimacy of using Native American names as team names and mascots.

As a person who speaks on the radio everyday, I am very sensitive to freedom of speech.  It always worries me when the federal government decides what is “offensive” to Americans.  I think a better, more capitalistic way to deal with these issues would be for offended people to stop supporting teams like the Washington Redskins.  Don’t buy their tickets, don’t buy their jerseys or hats.  If there is enough public outrage…the teams will be forced to make a business decision and change their name.

There are over 40 teams in the Bay State that use images or names related to Native Americans.  Read the full Boston Herald article click here.

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