The horror: SCOTUS decision will allow entrepreneurs to trademark discriminatory, business-killing names

The hot takes on the Supreme Court’s 8—0 decision Monday in Matal v. Tam just keep coming. Because the court ruled in favor of an Asian-American band that wanted to trademark its name, The Slants, America’s marginalized communities are already facing an increase in PTSD and cigarette smoking, just to accommodate First Amendment absolutists’ demand that “hate speech” be protected.

Now the Washington Post is offering up a somewhat different take on the SCOTUS decision in the form of an op-ed from law professor Robert S. Chang.

What hath SCOTUS wrought? If a band can trademark a name like “The Slants,” what’s to stop entrepreneurs from attempting to “recreate a segregated marketplace through signs that can be federally registered as trademarks”? For example, how long will it be until a gun shop that markets itself as a “Muslim Free Zone” trademarks the name and hangs up a sign out front?

Following Matal v. Tam, nothing will prevent the owner from obtaining federal registration of “Muslim Free Zone” as a trademark, accomplishing through speech what he might not be able to do through direct denial of service. For businesses not covered by Title II of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, nothing will prevent the creation and federal registration of trademarks such as “No Gays Allowed” or, for that matter, “Whites Only.”

So … now it isn’t up to the Patent and Trademark Office to decide for you if you can name your gay dance club, say, “No Gays Allowed,” or your chain of overpriced organic groceries, “Pretentious Hipsters Only”? Damn you, Slants!

* * *

Related:

 

 

The post The horror: SCOTUS decision will allow entrepreneurs to trademark discriminatory, business-killing names appeared first on twitchy.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *