Alex Blaze

Dykes on Bikes now have legal protection

Filed By Alex Blaze | July 13, 2007 2:18 PM | comments

Filed in: The Movement
Tags: court cases, Dykes on Bikes, Michael McDermott, misogyny, National Center for Lesbian Rights, Pride

From the NCLR:

The San Francisco Women's Motorcycle Contingent announced today that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit issued a final ruling yesterday affirming the group's trademark of the name "DYKES ON BIKES." The Court of Appeals rejected the argument that the name "DYKES ON BIKES" was disparaging to men. Barring Supreme Court intervention, yesterday's decision removed the last obstacle to registration of the trademark.

Michael McDermott argued that lesbians were an anti-man hate group and the word "dyke" is associated with that hatred. More from him, after the jump.

This originally started a couple of years ago a group not associated with motorcycling women tried to use that name and charge others money to use it, resulting in them seeking copywritten protection of that name. The trademark office held off for two years saying that name was disparaging to lesbians, but the lesbians themselves won that battle and the patent office reversed its decision.

Then McDermott for the past two years has had them in court claiming that the name and the group are disparaging to men (this sounds like a guy The Daily Show should interview...). Yep, one Michael McDermott thought he spoke for 150 million men in saying that the term "dyke" was somehow hurtful to men:

McDermott said the name is "disparaging to men and is scandalous and immoral." [...]

McDermott refused to comment on the case. In the arguments he filed with the patent office and in court, he stated his opposition to any trademark for a group associated with the annual Dyke March, which he dubbed "the Annual Illegal San Francisco Dyke Hate Riot."

He said he and all men are subject to criminal attacks and civil right violations during the march, and said the word dyke is associated with a "deep obsessive hatred of men and the male gender."

What a surprise, this guy didn't win his case.

The NCLR is celebrating this victory:

"After a three year court battle, we are thrilled 'DYKES ON BIKES' will be protected under trademark and recognized as a celebration of our identity," said Vick Germany, the group's president. Soni Wolf, SFWMC secretary said, "This is a great victory for dyke pride and visibility -- not just for our group, but for lesbians across the country who value 'DYKES ON BIKES' as an affirmation of lesbian strength and resilience."

And Pride for us all. There isn't a parade without the Dykes on Bikes leading the way.


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