Hail to the Reagans?
After the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office decided last week to strip the Washington football team of its federal trademark, wags on Twitter suggested that the team just change its name to the Washington Reagans. Anti-tax crusader and President Ronald Reagan acolyte Grover Norquist jokingly endorsed the idea in an interview with BuzzFeed.
This week, Michael Taube, a contributing writer for the Washington Times, wrote a column—"Why Not the Washington Reagans?"—arguing that what started as a joke is actually a good idea. And he seems to be at least somewhat sincere, as he dedicates more than 700 words to the case.
Here are his main points:
- Reagan is worthy of such an honor: "He was a great man, a great patriot and a great president. If there was ever a world leader who deserved to have his name associated in a positive fashion with a sports team, it would be Reagan."
- Reagan liked football.
- Dan Snyder is a Republican.
- The patent office couldn't argue with this name.
- The left's reaction to his name change would be "priceless."
Taube also suggests that the trademark board's decision may have come from the White House. After all, Democratic President Bill Clinton was in office when the board made a similar decision in 1999 to cancel the team's federal trademark on the grounds that it was disparaging to Native Americans.
Bill Clinton was in office during the 1999 publicity stunt, which was later overturned in the federal court. While it’s unclear who is behind this current farce, many speculate it came from higher up the political food chain. As mentioned in The Washington Times’ June 19 editorial, “President Obama suggested in October that the football team should ‘think about changing’ its name, and here we are in June, and the administration is trying to force it to comply. Funny how that works.
Taube says that while he thinks the Washington Reagans would be a strong alternative name, he'd prefer the team to keep its current name, which "symbolizes the positive virtues of strength, courage and a warriorlike spirit on the gridiron." Of course.