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J. Michael Smith, Esq.

Michael P. Farris, Esq.

Statement Regarding Obama Campaign’s
‘Joshua Generation’ Project

J. Michael Smith

June 11, 2008

About June 7, the Home School Legal Defense Association learned that Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign may be planning to unveil a major new program to attract younger evangelicals and Catholics, using the name the “Joshua Generation Project” or the “Joshua Generation.”

HSLDA is the owner of two federal trademark registrations, GENERATION JOSHUA® and GENERATION JOSHUA & Design®. Both trademarks were registered with the U.S. Patent ® Trademark Office in 2006 for use with “education services, namely conducting programs in the field of civic involvement and providing training for youth in the field of performing civic activity.”

These trademark registrations are a matter of public record. HSLDA has used these two trademarks continuously since 2003 for various services related to engaging young people, particularly within the Christian community, in civic involvement. Michael Farris, Founder and Chairman of HSLDA, also published a book in 2005 entitled The Joshua Generation: Restoring the Heritage of Christian Leadership and has spoken in many public forums to challenge this generation to rise up and become the “Joshua Generation.”

After hearing of this possible use of the name “Joshua Generation” by Obama for America, HSLDA’s legal counsel promptly sent a letter to the campaign. This letter provided additional notice of HSLDA’s federal trademark registrations, explaining that the similarity of the “Joshua Generation Project” name—as used with the proposed activities of the Obama for America campaign—is likely to cause confusion with HSLDA’s GENERATION JOSHUA® marks. HSLDA also requested that the campaign promptly refrain from using the “Joshua Generation Project” name or any other name that is confusingly similar to HSLDA’s GENERATION JOSHUA® trademarks. This letter provided several days for the Obama for America campaign to appropriately process and respond to this request.

While HSLDA respects Senator Obama’s desire to reach out to young people of faith, HSLDA is hopeful that the Obama for America campaign will respect HSLDA's trademark rights and honor this request.

 Other Resources

Visit Generation Joshua

HSLDA Bookstore: The Joshua Generation by Michael P. Farris

Home School Heartbeat archives: “Joshua Generation”

Home School Court Report: “A Vision for the Joshua Generation”