At the risk of coming across insensitive, I’m going to try to address the controversy that is the Washington “Redskins”.
Reports have surfaced that members of the DC Council and Congress have written letters to Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder ordering that he changes the name of the franchise due to it’s racial slur toward Native Americans as a name. For those that don’t know, the R-word is to Native Americans as the N-word is to African Americans and the W-word is to Mexican Americans.
Personally, I’ve been following the Redskins since I was put here on this earth way back in the early 1990’s and just recently did I find out the offensive nature of the franchises name. And more recently than that, Native Americans are becoming offended by the name. My only quarrel with this is its timing. The Washington Redskins have been around, and named that, since 1932. That is 80 YEARS. The name has been written, spoken, and praised for over 80 years and NOW people are beginning to get offended?
It’s not like fans are screaming it with the intent on offending anybody. Nobody is walking up to a Native American, looking them in the eye, and screaming “HEY YOU *R-WORD*!!”. Sure, they did way back when the west was being discovered, but most football fans, and Americans, today don’t know the true origin or the offensive nature of the word.
Okay, so that’s not my ONLY quarrel with this issue…I have one more…
I have a BIG problem with the people that are calling for the change. Of all the problems in this great nation today, poverty, unemployment, high price of gas, a war, Oklahoma, terrorism, the economy, I could go on…, and this is what they are going to change? I understand that racism is awful and I don’t stand for it at all, but the politicians should be focused on making sure that this country can even exist at all. Personally, I view them doing this as just a way to gain votes from the Native American population.
Trust me, I’m just as against racism and stereotypes as the next activist, but this is getting a little out of hand. I understand both sides to the coin. On the one hand, the R-word and name of the franchise is offensive, but on the other hand, people don’t even know that and the first thing they think about when it is spoken is the Washington DC football franchise.
No matter what, even if the name gets changed, it will be a debate that lives on forever. So far, team owner Daniel Snyder has been pretty adamant that the name of the three-time Super Bowl winning DC franchise will forever stay the same. Personally, I second that motion, Mr. Snyder.
- Congress members push Redskins name change (cbssports.com)
- Members of Congress urge Redskins to change name (tracking.si.com)
- Congress urges Redskins to change name (espn.go.com)
- 10 Congress members urge Redskins to change name (wjla.com)
- Members of Congress urge Redskins to change name (timesleader.com)