Second observation: Furious about Nike’s decision, the governor of Arizona has canceled the $1 million in subsidies that the company was promised in return for opening a $184 million factory in the state. OK, this sort of political tit-for-tat happens all the time — but the Supreme Court has recently made things interesting. At the end of its most recent term, the justices ruled in Iancu v. Brunetti that the federal government cannot refuse to register a trademark for being “scandalous” — which the court defined as giving offense — because such a power would amount to viewpoint discrimination, which the First Amendment forbids.
Hmm. You get the Arizona subsidy if you sell the shoe with the 13-star flag but not otherwise? Sure sounds like viewpoint discrimination to me. I don’t expect Nike to sue Arizona for violating the company’s First Amendment rights, but goodness that would be a fun case.