Fun with Offensive Trademarks

For no particular reason whatsoever, I thought it might be worthwhile to take some time to poke around the USPTO database.  I wanted to see what potentially “disparaging,” “immoral,” or “scandalous” trademarks and service marks are still live in 2014.

Here’s a very small sampling of what I found.  The marks are listed in no order, and include the good or service for which it was registered:

“Guadalahonky’s” — Salsa and prepared Mexican food items.

“Dago Red” — Apparel.

“Roundeyes” — Automotive lighting.RoundeyesLogo

“Fuck You” — Athletic apparel.

“Asshole Repellent” — Novelty.

“FagOut!” — Apparel items (hats, etc).

“Heeb”Magazine publishing.

“Queer Beer” — Beer.  Obviously.

“Creepy Ass Cracka” — Bumper stickers, apparel.

“Pay Per Jew” — Jewish-themed TV and radio programming and associated apparel.

“Functioning Retard” — Clothing, coffee mugs, bumper stickers.

“White Trash Racin'” — Apparel, especially hats and t-shirts.WhiteTrashRacin

“Fuck the Cool Kids” — Athletic apparel.

“Fag” — Technical lubricating oils and greases.

“JewButt” — Underwear.

“Homo-A-Go-Go” — Entertainment services.

“Retardipedia” — Humor-themed website.

“The Beaners” — Entertainment in the form of TV shows and cartoons.

“Figgas Over Niggas” — Dancing apparel and athletic apparel.

“Trannyshack” — Nightclub and entertainment events.

SmokinJoes

“Jewdoku” — Downloadable game.

“Tardglish” — Humor-themed website.

“Perma-Chink” — Synthetic mortar.

“Kracker Koalition” — Apparel.

Smokin Joes — Cigarettes, ammunition, and various other products.

Plus 250 marks that include “Redneck.”

Personally, I’m happy that all of these marks are still in use.  Are at least some of these objectively offensive?  Absolutely!  But, once the government confers a benefit of some type, it shouldn’t be allowed to withhold that benefit based on “offensiveness.”  In traditional First Amendment terminology, that practice might properly be called impermissible viewpoint discrimination.

Even putting the relevant (and possibly unconstitutional) portion of the Lanham Act entirely aside, I would hate to think that we would prefer to leave it up to the government to tell us what is “too” offensive, especially on an inconsistent or selective basis.

Certainly, we can—and should—collectively decide for ourselves what is too offensive to support.

Right?

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8 Responses to Fun with Offensive Trademarks

  1. G. Vann says:

    Good Ammo! Thanks.

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  5. Have you tried delicious Green Mountain Gringo Salsa?

  6. God, I’m dying from laughter!

  7. Mark Reynolds says:

    Good stuff. In defense of Perma-Chink, chinking is an accepted term for mortar, particularly for that used to seal between logs in log cabins, and likely predates the racial slur.

    • Tom Garrett says:

      Absolutely. And one of these (Dago Red, maybe? I can’t remember now.) actually involved the guy’s real name. Thanks for reading!

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