Associated Press
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi

Pelosi Says Trademark Office Should Not Protect 'Redskins'


On Thursday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said that the word “redskins” should not be a protected trademark.

RELATED Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Says ‘No’ to 'Redskins'

“We all respect freedom of speech, but the [U.S. Patent and] Trademark office has rejected names which are considered offensive and they should do it now," Pelosi said at an event hosted by the National Congress of American Indians. "They can keep their name on the team, but when it comes to all the stuff -- that's serious money. So I think that is one path that we can go."

Pelosi told The Hill in October, that the name should change saying that the “R-word” is insulting and a racial slur to Native American people. “"It’s time to choose another name," she said during the NCAI event. "In fact, it’s long overdue.”

This is the first time that Ms. Pelosi has publicly put pressure on the trademark office to use its power to make a change. The U.S. Patent and Trademark office declined to offer a statement on Pelosi’s remarks, the Huff Post said.

The office has rejected related trademarks such as, Redskins Fanatic, Redskin Rooters and ICTMN reported that Redskins Hog Rinds was also rejected in January due to “redskins” being a “derogatory term.”

RELATED Patent Office: Your 'Redskins' Pork Rinds Are Racist, Trademark Denied

A lawsuit to revoke the NFL team’s name is currently pending before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board and in January, The Washington Post said that a decision was expected soon. In 1992, Suzan Harjo brought a similar suit but it was thrown out on a technicality in 2009.

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Michael Madrid's picture
Michael Madrid
Submitted by Michael Madrid on
It's clear to me that money is changing hands between Snyder and someone else. Why would Redskin Pork Rinds be racist, but Redskins not? Pretty soon Snyder's obsession with be his downfall. Never say never, Dan.

stevef's picture
Submitted by stevef on
I for one do not agree with an attempt to get the US Patent office to step in. I think Ms. Pelopsi is wrong to try. Whats next, Hooters because it is sexist! Who's ethics are you going to use. I vote mine! I agree with me almost 100% of the time! By the way, 'Skin' that short for 'Redskin'? Do you have to have the right colored skin to be able to use the term 'skin'. I use it often. I see it is even a category within Indian Country Today? So, if I say 'Nig' and don't finish the term, I am good? Or, once again, that is only good if I am 'a person of color'? Honks can't use that term!