Los Calaheim Angels
Citing a need to alter its marketing image,
the Anaheim Angels have decided to officially change their name,
even though the Angels may face a defamation suit by the church.
Special to The LaLa Times
by Brad Schreiber
CALAHEIM, Ca. — Baseball’s Anaheim Angels officially
changed their name and now they are on the path to Hell.
In a move considered generally unprecedented, the Archdiocese of
Los Angeles and Orange Counties have sued the Angels after the team
legally changed its name to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
This comes after the city of Anaheim sued the Angels because of
the dilution of the Anaheim name, which replaced the old California
Angels which replaced the old Los Angeles Angels.
"Hey, it could be worse. We could have
called them the Los Angeles Angels of Detroit."
— Arte Moreno, Angels' owner
Owner Arte Moreno responded to the complaints,
saying, "Hey, it could be worse. We could have called them the
Los Angeles Angels of Detroit."
This is the first time a religious denomination has filed suit against
a professional sports team, claiming encroachment upon their imagery,
precepts and marketing.
"The idea of an angel, an icon of worship, sliding into second,
spikes up in the air, violently trying to break up a double play is
abhorrent to worshipers everywhere," said the Archbishop of Orange
County, Kenji Rabinowitz-Bahktiar.
Todd Theodora, attorney for the Angels, offered the religious organizations
a potential compromise on behalf of Moreno. But the name the Los Angeles
Flying Deities of Anaheim, while acceptable to the Archidocese, was
objected to by others and it won’t fit easily on billboards,
hats or anywhere else.
The League of Catholic Bishops claimed angels are not flying deities
but rather, flying messengers, and the Bible Belt Association of America
insisted "God’s permanent part-time help" was the
respectful name for the team to use.
Even if the team does resolve the issue of what their mascot will
be, it is still not clear where the wayward Southern California team
is technically from. Since they will continue to play home games in
Anaheim, Orange County Superior Court Judge Bobby Lee al-Hamza ruled
recently that the name must reflect, in part, the name "Anaheim"
in their title.
This has prompted Moreno to float the idea of calling the team the
Los Calaheim Angels or, barring acceptance of the mascot, referring
more generically to the team as the Los Calaheim Athletes.
A spokesperson for the National Hockey League New Jersey Devils has
said any ruling forbidding the Angels from using that name would be
an infringement of freedom of religion and that the NHL would sue
all churches named in the suit.