Washington Redskins, Aunt Jemima & The US Patent Office
June 19, 2014
The United States Patent and Trademark Office has canceled the Washington Redskins’ trademark registration, saying the team name is “disparaging of Native Americans, when used in relation to professional football services.” CNBC
I agree the name “Redskins” is offensive. As The Sociopathic Business Model™ has taught take a page from their playbook and use the truth against them to hurt their image (money) to create positive change. The problem is however the US Patent & Trademark Office illegally acting as judge, jury and executioner regarding the topic is not the answer.
1890R.T. Davis purchased the struggling Aunt Jemima Manufacturing Company. He then brought the Aunt Jemima character to life when he hired Nancy Green as his spokeswoman.
Spokeswoman in 1890? Hired or exploited? And just because we “always” had these names is not a justification for keeping them. I understand there is a history attached to both but if we always do what we always did, we’ll always get what we always got (Twain). Racism is the number two claim in EEOC violations and perpetuating racism (via current products) isn’t the answer anymore than breaking the law to make those changes is. Two wrongs do not make a right.
We underestimate the ability of the power of the people every day and companies along with the government count on that. If we want to create change we have to be a part of the change, do so legally and put pressure on those who are operating under The Sociopathic Business Model™. The US Patent & Trademark Office had approved the trademark in the past (right or wrong) but the proper legal channels have to create the change legally. Tim Armstrong, AOL CEO for his blatant sexism towards women should be removed via forced accountability but AOL’s Patent shouldn’t’ be revoked. Different yes because the Redskins’ name is offensive but forced accountability is the answer to create the positive change.
Create Boycotts and with social media the ability to put pressure on organizations is much easier. But again one person can start it but the rest need to get behind it! What other products or companies are missing from the offensive list?