The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) recently rejected an application to register a trademark for “Redskins Hog Rinds,” deeming the R-word “derogatory slang” and stating that the product’s name “consists of or includes matter which may disparage or bring into contempt or disrepute persons, institutions, beliefs, or national symbols.”
“The USPTO ruling sends a powerful message to Washington team owner Dan Snyder and the NFL that in the name of basic decency and respect they should immediately stop spending millions of dollars to promote the R-word,” said Oneida Indian Nation Representative Ray Halbritter.
Halbritter continued: “This is a huge potential precedent-setter rooted in the painfully self-evident truth that the Change the Mascot campaign has been reiterating: The R-word is a dictionary defined slur designed to demean and dehumanize an entire group of people.”
The agency is now deliberating on whether it will revoke the existing R-word trademark held by the Washington NFL team.
This week’s momentous development has been the subject of a series of stories in major national media outlets with prominent pieces running in TIME, USA Today, The New York Daily News, NBC Sports,Washington CBS and others.