BOSTON (CBS) – The U.S. Patent Office decided Wednesday that the federal trademarks for the Washington Redskins name must be canceled, based on a law prohibiting the use of registered names that are “disparaging, scandalous, contemptuous or disreputable.”
But it seems as though owner Dan Snyder and the Washington Redskins will not budge and are prepping for a legal battle in court. Snyder has refused to change the team’s name amid growing pressure from outside groups, even President Barack Obama.
98.5 The Sports Hub’s Toucher & Rich show brought in former Redskins general manager Vinny Cerrato, now a radio host in Baltimore, to sort this whole thing out.
Cerrato worked for Redskins owner Daniel Snyder for years as his general manager. Cerrato knows Snyder well, and despite the fans being ready for a name change, the owner will not give in to outside pressure.
Cerrato referenced a similar ruling with the Patent Office in 1999, but after years in court it was eventually thrown out on a technicality. As far as other companies profiting off the trademarks, Cerrato said “nothing will change” unless Snyder goes to court and loses, which could be a lengthy process.
Most fans of the NFL and people around the country just want this whole ordeal to be over with and are tired of seeing this story dominate the news cycle. Apparently, fans in the DC area are of the same mind and just want the name changed already.
“A lot of Redskins fans are tired of it,” said Cerrato. “They’re saying, ‘Let’s just get it over with.’ I know Dan Snyder very well and he’s fighting this. He’s against it. He doesn’t believe what people are saying about the studies. I think they will fight until the end.”
Rich brought up the point that Snyder, a very wealthy businessman, is foolish for not changing the name and recognizing the opportunity to cash in on new merchandise, etc. Cerrato says it’s not about that.
“It’s definitely not a money thing for Dan. If Dan changed the name of the team he’d make more money from new sales, new colors and everything. This is all about principle.”
Former Redskins players, like London Fletcher and Champ Bailey, have come out in support of a name change but Snyder has been persistent in this fight.
Listen below for the full discussion: