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Native American GOP Congressman Demands Rename Of Washington Redskins – Says Name Is Racist

Posted by on Jan. 22, 2013 at 2:49 PM
  • 74 Replies

 

Native American GOP Congressman Demands Rename Of Washington Redskins – Says Name Is Racist

2013/01/18
By

Washington_Redskins_logoEver since Theodore Roosevelt graced the White House, at that time called the Presidential Mansion, football has been considered an American pastime. While baseball and basketball have both dominated at different points historically, it is football that returns to prominence again and again.

So, when someone criticizes the sport, or a team, it becomes headline news.

Representative Tom Cole, the Deputy Minority Whip, raised some people’s ire when the member of the Chickasaw Nation criticized the Washington Redskins for their name and mascot, claiming they are, at best, insensitive, at worst, racist. As he said on Thursday:

Come on. This is the 21st century. This is the capital of political correctness on the planet. It is very, very, very offensive. This isn’t like warriors or chiefs. It’s not a term of respect, and it’s needlessly offensive to a large part of our population. They just don’t happen to live around Washington, D.C.

It’s a great football team with a great football tradition, and it shouldn’t have a name that’s derogatory to Native Americans attached to it.


The name “Redskins” was adopted by the team, originally known as the Tornadoes, in 1933, with legend saying that the name was chosen in honor of the teams coach, Lone Star Dietz, who claimed to be part Sioux, a claim which has itself come with controversy. The team owners have, over the years, insisted that the name was a sign of respect for our native heritage. The problem is, none of the Native American nations have bought that line.

Branding is important in any business, but especially in sports. Teams spend years building up their brand recognition. The failure of the team to respond to decades of complaints regarding the name shows contempt and is, ultimately, racist. Would we stand for the “Washington Negroes?” Claims of “honoring Native Americans” fall on deaf ears, for the name itself is a severe insult to the tribes.

Of course, there is a simple solution to the issue, which would not eliminate the name at all: change the logo. There is a redskin which is perfectly suitable for use as a mascot, the Solanum tuberosum, commonly called the potato. A gigantic spud mascot strutting the field would be amusing, and it would give the fans inspiration for insults to hurl at the opposing team. They could even refer to the field kicker as the “spud cannon” and make similar tuber-related jokes. Alternatively, if they want to keep the native mascot, they should change the name of the team, possibly working with one of the native tribes. The Washington Cherokees has a nice ring to it. The two together remain offensive, and insulting, for a population which is now becoming very politically active and are proving themselves very capable of getting what they need done.

While Congressman Cole is not planning on pushing the issue, raising it as a valid conversation reminds us all that racism is still not eliminated in this nation. It is inappropriate for any professional agency to wrap itself around racist epithets in this day and age of hyper-networked social media. It is time the Redskins enter the modern world. After all, the name change did not hurt the Washington Bullets, now known as the Washington Wizards. A bold stroke forward for the franchise would be a breath of fresh air. Or, they could continue losing to the Seattle Seahawks.

by on Jan. 22, 2013 at 2:49 PM
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Replies (1-10):
stormcris
by Christy on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:04 PM

Hmmmm ok then

parentalrights1
by on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:06 PM
1 mom liked this
I had pondered that myself. But I'm sure a bunch a bunch of privilaged white people will make it somehow wrong for members of that race to be offended
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Mommy_of_Riley
by Jes on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:32 PM
1 mom liked this
Don't they complain about this every few years? They have also complained about the Florida State Seminoles but the tribe in Florida stood by the university
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LauraKW
by "Dude!" on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:40 PM

 I hate the name, and I could never be a fan of that team because of it.

IntactivistMama
by on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:41 PM
Name it the whiteskins. :-P
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LauraKW
by "Dude!" on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:41 PM

 FSU is respectful to the tribe, any ceremonies or performances are accurate representations and the tribe is always consulted.  And FSU pays a shitload to the tribe for the rights.

Quoting Mommy_of_Riley:

Don't they complain about this every few years? They have also complained about the Florida State Seminoles but the tribe in Florida stood by the university

 

dustinsmom1
by JENN on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:43 PM

 Eh, I'm a Redskins fan, go Skins!

 

The Native Americans have a right to be offended, and the team has a right to use the name. People need to get over themselves and choose battles that are actually meaningful.

yourspecialkid
by Platinum Member on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:46 PM
1 mom liked this
Oh boo hoo. I have NA blood and I do not have problem with it. People need to spend less time finding offense and more time finding joy.
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OHgirlinCA
by Platinum Member on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:48 PM

I can see why some would be offended. If I were offended, I simply wouldn't support the team. 

Miami University of Ohio used to be the Redskins.  They changed their name to the Redhawks some time in the 90's I believe.

Euphoric
by Bazinga! on Jan. 22, 2013 at 3:49 PM

Hmm. I don't know, I don't really see a problem.

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