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Washington Redskins Name Change Gains Momentum

By Chris Hoenig

The debate is growing hotter over whether the Washington Redskins should change their name.There’s a disagreement in Washington, D.C., that’s making headlines across the country, and it has nothing to do with the budget or the deficit. Instead, it’s a battle between the owner of D.C.’s pro football team, the Washington Redskins, and millions of Americans who think it’s time for the franchise to change its name.

The Redskins haven’t always played in Washington. They haven’t always been the Redskins. But they have always been named after the American Indian. The franchise was founded in 1932 as the Boston Braves, playing in the baseball stadium of the then Boston, now Atlanta Braves. A year later, they moved in with the crosstown baseball rivals, playing their home games at the Red Sox’s Fenway Park, and changed their name to the Redskins. In 1937, the team moved to Washington, D.C., and the Washington Redskins were officially born.

But the name is seen by many as a racial slur, offensive to American Indians. The Oneida Indian Nation, based in New York, has started a campaign to get the team to change its name. “We are asking the NFL to stop using a racial slur as the name of Washington’s football team,” Oneida Indian Nation representative Ray Halbritter said.

The Oneida Indian Nation, which traces its history back to the Iroquois Confederacy and has been closely involved with issues involving American Indian rights, has found an ally in the most powerful person in the country: President Barack Obama. While acknowledging the passion Redskins have for the team—and its name—the President indicated it’s time for a change. “I don’t know whether our attachment to a particular name should override the real, legitimate concerns that people have about these things,” Obama told the Associated Press, adding that if he were Redskins owner Dan Snyder and knew the team name was “offending a sizable group of people,” then he would “think about changing it.”

“As the first sitting President to speak out against the Washington team name, President Obama’s comments are truly historic,” Halbritter said. “The use of such an offensive term has negative consequences for the Native American community when it comes to issues of self-identity and imagery.”

Redskins Support

While the Oneida Indian Nation has support from many fans and the President of the United States, it doesn’t have the support of the most influential people: Snyder and other NFL team and league executives.

In an open, two-page letter to fans, Snyder defended the Redskins name and provided quotes from American Indian leaders who not only support the name, but advocate NOT changing it. “When I consider the Washington Redskins name, I think of what it stands for. I think of the Washington Redskins traditions and pride I want to share with my three children, just as my father shared with me—and just as you have shared with your family and friends,” Snyder wrote.

“I would be offended if they did change,” he quoted Patawomeck Tribe retired Chief Robert Green as saying. “Completely remove the Indian identity from anything and pretty soon, you have a wipeout in society of any reference to Indian people.”

Snyder also has the support of one of the NFL’s most powerful owners, Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys, who says “the intent is very positive.”

Perhaps most important for Snyder, he also has the backing of the NFL league office (even though the league has a history of not exactly being the most tolerant employer out there). Commissioner Roger Goodell said he recognizes that there are different opinions and that the league needs to listen and make sure it’s “doing what’s right,” but he also defended the Redskins name. “By no means, growing up in Washington and being a Redskins fan, have I ever considered it derogatory as a fan,” Goodell said. “I think that’s how the Redskins fans look at it. The Redskins have always presented it as part of their tradition, their history. ‘Hail to the Redskins’ is part of that proud tradition.”

Proud Tradition?

While the Redskins pride themselves on tradition, the team’s history is one of racism. It’s easy to understand why the franchise changed its name when the Boston Braves moved into Fenway Park in 1933. (The Red Sox certainly wouldn’t want to share their stadium with a team bearing the name of their crosstown rivals.) According to a Boston Globe report, owner George Preston Marshall—reportedly a rancorous racist—chose Redskins because head coach William “Lone Star” Dietz had “signed up a number of Indian players.”

Reportedly, one of the reasons for the team’s move to Washington in 1937 was that, unlike Boston, Washington was partially segregated. The Redskins were the last NFL team to have a Black player on their roster, finally trading for running back Bobby Mitchell in 1962 after Secretary of the Interior Stewart Udall threatened to evict the team from its (federally funded) stadium.

Other American Indian–Named Sports Teams

The Redskins are far from the only sports team in the country named after the American Indian. A Washington high school dropped the Redskins name earlier this year and the NCAA has banned American Indian team names and mascots (with the exception of the Florida State Seminoles, who have the blessing of the two remaining Seminole tribes), but the Redskins aren’t even the only American Indian team in pro football. The Kansas City Chiefs, who have an arrowhead logo on their helmets and play at Arrowhead Stadium, used a man dressed in a feathered headdress as their mascot until 1989.

Major League Baseball has two American Indian–named teams. The Atlanta Braves –the same franchise the Washington Redskins shared a stadium with in Boston—are known for their “Tomahawk Chop” at games, and the Cleveland Indians have had their name since 1915.

The defending Stanley Cup champions are the Chicago Blackhawks, whose logo of an American Indian in profile was ranked the top logo in the sport in 2008.

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45 Comments

  • Luke Easter

    “Redskins”

    Here’s a piece of information most people have never heard,

    “Redskins” to the American Indian is equal to the, “N” word,

    Remember the, “Frito Bandito” & the uprising of Hispanics?

    Like then, people feel there is no cause for worldwide panic.

    But it is not about most people, who have not had their home,

    Stolen by outsiders building cities where Buffalo used to roam,

    Death to those refusing to forget their birthright native tongue,

    Burned at the stake and/or firing squads in front of their young.

    An offensive & derogatory term referring to Native Americans.

    The U.S. paying for each Indian killed is from whence it begins,

    In lieu of carrying bodies killers would present scalps for pay,

    Since, “Redskins” was offensive then many feel it still is today.

    Some believe the use of “Red” is as a color metaphor for race,

    Others say,it constitutes war paint donned on a warriors face,

    Does it really matter when a nation, not immigrants, shall say?

    They’re the ones to determine that & they want it taken away.

    However, the all powerful National Football League says no,

    Not compensating concussions suffered by former players so,

    Players sue, legal action, settlement reached & mucho denari,

    NFL gets to admit no wrongdoing not even to say we’re sorry.

    Native Americans do not like to use, “Red” like Rappers use, “N,”

    From the derogatory definition associated with both now and then,

    How African American youth seem to take pride in slinging it back,

    Slave ships or Times Square, it is still demeaning and that is a fact.

    “I will never change the name Redskins, you can put that in CAPS,”

    So says team owner, Daniel Synder in a stubborn vocal facial slap,

    President Obama weighed in and that’s supposed to incite a scare?

    GOP refuses a compromise on the shutdown because of Obamacare.

    Billion$ Industry v. Nation where the game is played on stolen land,

    Fan based contest to come up with a new Moniker, so easily they can,

    Concerned with safety too bad helmets are not hard as Synder’s head,

    Those saying, “Redskins” should not be changed are legally brain dead.

    • You have got to be kidding me! Isn’t there anything in Washington or this country that is more important than changing the long time name of a professional football team? If they rename them appropriately with DC, then they can be the “Washington Losers” or the “Washington idiots”. I guess they should also consider changing the professional hockey teams’ name from the “Chicago Black Hawks” to a more pc name like the “Chicago Chickadees”. It will never stop until every word in the English language is converted to the pc language that liberals enjoy. I’m White, and I think the Chicago American League baseball team should change the name “Chicago White Sox”, as it offends me and states that I am below everything else!

    • ROBIN WRIGHT

      GOOD COMMENTS !

    • kevin gault

      Change the name.Insulting names create an aire of injustice. Injustice anywhere is threat to justice everywhere. MLK.

    • It took the person that wrote this crap to be brain deficient. Get a life and move on.

    • You Sir, are brain dead! The name ” Redskins” was first created, by Native Americans, to refer to their elite fighting force, that used, successfully, red face and body paint to intimidate opposing forces. It referred to extreme bravery and extreme fighting skill. Once opposing forces saw this body paint, they knew immediately that facing them in battle was a terrible decision, because of their legendary fighting prowess. Native American school chose this name to represent Native Achievement, success, bravery and commitment. Why else would schools, on Native American schools choose this school name? If was equivalent to the “N”, they would never use it! 90% of Natives Americans polled, liked the name. Only politically charged Native Americans with a political agenda hated the name. It is just to convenient that whining over the name, began after the Atlanta Braved offered cash or financial support to Native American groups to keep their name. It is a cash grab opportunity for political Native Americans! The dictionary refers to, “Redskins” as Native Americans, with no negative slant, whatsoever. The only suggest that some racists use the term. but they are the brain dead haters. They hate everyone unlike themselves. This has no bearing on the real “Redskin” term. I, and Native American friends view this name as a positive term for bravery in battle. The equivalent of marines”. Something to be very proud of. Don’t forget that Native Americans came up with up with the name. African
      Americans did not start the “N” word, and predominantly African American schools would never choose this name for their sports teams. Native Americans schools, on reserves, did! There is zero relationship between the terrible “N” word and “Redskins” at all. Many Native American schools refused to stop using the term. This speaks volumes. The Native American schools that did change the name, did so, after being bullied by Native political groups! Drop it! It had zero merit, and is senseless whining! I wear my Redskins apparel with pride, and the thought of a negative connotation of the word, did not even occur to me, or other Native American Redskins fans. This is Political Correctness gone mad! I don’t hear anyone whining about the “Cowboys”, or their hilarious mascot! Just my opinion, but one shared by many!

      • Luke Visconti

        You’re completely wrong. First of all, it was Indian nations that decided that the term Redskin is offensive. Second, I looked up your cute story about body paint and found that the 1699 letter that refers to the term Redskin as body paint is a fraud. Your several friends do not trump the entire nations who used our court system to right a wrong.

        In closing, I’m glad you wear the apparel of a billionaire owner’s team proudly. It’s a good indication of your IQ; people will be able to spot you from blocks away and form an opinion. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • Terri L. Summers

    Being part Native American, I can understand the controversy. My suggestion; rename them “The Washington Wolves”, !

  • Why just the Redskins? There are several other professional teams and or colleges with some type of Native American Name. Why stop there with just the Redskins. Is it because that’s home to our nations capital? Should we call them the “Washington Debt In curers,” Washington ShutDowns.” or how about the ” Washington Dictators.” I mean come on… I love the name and I’m glad the owner is sticking to his guns. Just like you Obama. There will be no Negotiations on changing the Name of this team. Unless, the Republicans should had put that on the table for demands to Defund obamacare to open up the government. I think you would of signed that Bill Mr. President.

    I personally think the Washington Redskins should “Drop,” the Name Washington in their name. To be further revered to as ” The Redskin Nation.”

    • WOW, another bigoted Tea Party idiot on the loose. You must be visiting Sarah Palin and looking out her window at Russia. Why not try picking up a book on the history of the American Indian – you just “MIGHT” begin to understand why the name is SOOO offensive. Oh never mind, it’s just asking way too much!!!

      • Mina~ You should do what you name says Mi – Na own business. Stop trying to make something out of Nothing. Your argument doesn’t have a leg to stand on… I bet your just trying to stir it up so you can throw your name in the hat when if it will ever come to negotiations for demands of royalty’s just to build another casino… Will never happen…

        What’s next changing the names of the NY Yankees, Rebels, New England Patriots, Cleveland Indians, Kansas City Chiefs, Atlanta Braves,Golden State Warriors,
        Chicago Blackhawks (NHL) – In 2008, this logo was voted best in the National Hockey League by The Hockey News.[7] / Florida State Seminoles, San Diego State Aztecs
        ++ Hundreds of schools and High Schools shall I go on…. Like I said History is what it is History. Years Ago it happened, Don’t know if you have waken up yet but its a new ERA. These teams are represented well and stand for the Native Americans.

        • ET, do you REALLY not see the difference between the term “Redskins” and terms like “Chiefs,” “Braves,” “Warriors,” and “Patriots”? Are you really that dense? There is NO EVIDENCE ANYWHERE, in literature, film, or media, that “Redskin” has EVER been used in a positive or neutral way. What does the nation lose by dropping a word that lumps diverse peoples together under one term? Really??? Do we lose anything??? Is a lame football team name THAT important to you? If so, you need to get out a bit. Travel. See the world. Become curious. You can thank me later.

    • My daughter and I were born in D.C. and we both grew up cheering the Redskins on to “victory.” I have a question: Why is it only the Washington Redskins’ name under attack? What about FSU (Florida State University) and what about another pro team, the Kansas City Chiefs? (You can’t have all Chiefs unless you have some Indians) and what about the Cleveland Indians – it goes on. Pretty soon there will be no First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. While I have admired our First Nations and love learning about their various cultures, someone needs to tell them it is not meant to be racist; it is just a GAME. Loosen up! I’ve been called names many times during my long life and I simply grew a thick skin. Actually the name originated, as I understand it, to honor, not degrade our Native Americans. There are far more issues than a team name that are associated with the NFL today. If you don’t like the name, just don’t watch them play.

      • Luke Visconti

        Why don’t you “loosen up”? If the Indians think Redskins is a pejorative, I think that’s very serious. Considering what our nation did to their nations, the least we can do is be respectful.

        It makes me sad to see people who clearly aren’t that successful defend billionaires in order to be entitled to belittle someone else. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • Wayne Del Pino

    The washington redskins should have a redskin Potato on their helment. And keep the name!

  • Perhaps they should change the name to something truly distasteful: The Washington Representatives.

    • Luke Visconti

      Then the team would strike and the defense wouldn’t talk to the offense and the entire team would spend five times as much money as it needed to with no discernible results. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • michael wilson

    Why don’t you so called minorities get the F over it. Enjoy your freebies while you still have them. much bigger fish to fry. I can not believe that you are actually whining over names. You Indians have big Casinos that you pay no taxes on, minority status’s etc.I have a lot of Cherokee in my Ancestry. Should I put an x the box on applications.

    • Luke Visconti

      Hopefully someone from the Cherokee Nation will comment. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

    • Elizabeth Stufflebeam

      And I suppose your great great great grandmother was a Indian princess. Why is it that everyone claims to be Cherokee? Can’t think of another tribe. You get over it.

    • Do you know how ignorant you sound ? Its not just a name its an insulting slur they used on your ancestors. Your ancestors were raped, enslaved, abused and killed by the Europeans (since you said you had some Cherokee in you), the name shows that its still okay. Thats why us natives (ya I’m native too) need to stand together and work for a name that isn’t offensive or demeaning to anyone

  • You’ve probably seen the commercial with the parrot and the man returning from the office. “I can’t take this, I can’t take this! Well I can’t take hearing about this Redskin name change one more minute. It’s ridiculous. Everyone is sooooo sensitive that everything we say or do now is offensive to someone or to some group. As Michael said, Get over it, they’ve been called the Washington Redskins for decades and decades, why now has it just become “offensive”? I can’t take this politically correct mentality, so far we’ve erased Christmas and replaced it with “Happy Holildays”, we’ve replaced Easter with “Happy Spring”, and the athiests want to replace “In God We Trust” with??….We Trust No One? So can you follow the absurdness here? Dan Snyder does not dislike Native Americans, he did not give this name to the team and he’s not going to change it and kill it’s history. Like the phrase….Speak Now or Forever hold your Peace, Native Americans should have objected when they originally named the team. It’s done, been done for a long time….so get over it.

    • Luke Visconti

      The Indians objected when we drove them off their land and slaughtered them. They’ve just now recovered enough sovereignty to press demands for accountability when they’re being used, smeared and demeaned. Your litany of what you feel is ridiculous is a wonderful recitation of various ways to offend the people around you. Happy Easter? Merry Christmas? Just fine in your church. “In God We Trust” was a 1956 (McCarthy-era) add-on; read up on the founders and their views on religion—e.g., The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine, who also wrote the most important call to the American Revolution, Common Sense. And think about this: Your bullheaded stomping all over other people’s feelings limits their performance at work (where you emailed this from). Would it be “political correctness” or “good business” and potentially “career-enhancing” for you to knock it off? Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

    • Robin, you are entitled to your limited inconsiderate intolerant perspective. Once you learn better, it’s ok to start doing better. Its never too late to right a wrong. If you don’t know any Native American Indians, you would not be able to relate to their concerns. In that case, you would rely on fundamental humanity and relate to fact that all people should be treated with dignity and respect, regardless.

  • My grandparents were each 1/2 Native American and were very proud of the fact. They were never bothered by the fact that there were teams who used Native American refrences for their name. There was somewhat a pride expecially when the teams won.
    I believe there is a pride among many Native Amercans who support keeping team names. What may have been a slur 20, 30, 50 years ago may not nessasarly be a slur today, 30 yease ago being called “Gay” was a slur, today we have “Gay Pride.” It is time to stop finding thing that devide us and look for the things that unite us.

  • It’s racist to call somebody a redskin, so it’s racist to name your team that. How much more cut and dry can you get?

    With other teams it’s common to see people in red face makeup to look like the racist Cleveland Indians charicature Chief Wahoo. Then there’s the tomahawk chop and that garbage, too. Regardless of the those teams’ intent, the result is giving people a chance to drudge up and glorify these racist images. That’s why they need to stop using them.

    The National Congress for American Indians just released a report about this topic, I thought it was a great read:
    http://www.ncai.org/news/articles/2013/10/10/ncai-releases-report-on-history-and-legacy-of-washington-s-harmful-indian-sports-mascot

  • Wow. Some of the comments here really make me sad. So many mean-spirited people. Thank you, Luke – for taking a moment to put some of them in their places.

    I love when folks are fired up about what they perceive as infringement on their rights and feelings but have no concern for the rights and feelings of others. Talk about missing the big picture. Why can’t we just be respectful of each other – differences included? And not take cheap pot shots at one another. Because let’s face it, those pot shots are not going to convince anyone that your position is the correct one.

  • What I’d like to know is why white team owners don’t name teams after figures from their own culture. Why is that not an option? Is it due to their total lack of knowledge or pride in their own heritage or cultural figures? And don’t tell me our historical knowledge only spans to when football teams came about. My point here is to go beyond that. Team owners and their defenders always say naming teams after Native Americans is a source of honor, will how about honoring your own.

    I’m sure there are names, figures and wonderful caricatures that would make all the bitter white people commenting on this site croon with pride. Its an easy fix people and doesn’t require getting all worked up.

    • Luke Visconti

      Because we have greater sensitivity for people’s feelings when it comes to MONEY. Although they’re reluctant to use peer pressure on the owner of the Redskins, all the owners want diversity sitting in the stands and watching the games on TV.

      Ironically, the only white-person symbol I can think of is the white guy on the New England Patriots helmet. I would think everyone agrees that patriots come in all races, genders, orientations, ethnicities, religions and with/without disabilities. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

    • Little bit of irony:

      There is a pro sports team named after a white guy: the Cleveland Browns (named after the team’s first coach, Paul Brown). -Chris Hoenig, Content Manager, DiversityInc

      • Yes, but that is a name to honor an individual. It does not lump a diverse people together under one name that has NEVER been used EXCEPT as an epithet by those outside the Native American community.

  • Luke and Chris as you can tell I don’t follow football but you both help illustrate my point. Thanks.

    Having a team name that can encompass any fan base is definitely positive. And naming a team after a coach; a real person who was instrumental in the team’s history? What a concept. Clearly he was very successful and deserving to down in history with such an honor.

    Now this makes sense to me. Instead of pulling a moniker out of the air or the past and building a facade of historical nonsense around it that doesn’t correlate to the local (Washington) culture or demographic is silly. I guess this means no one in the history of the redskins team has made any significant contribution to get such a honor….eh? Or is the owner too stingy for even that.

  • The President should immediately prohibit military support at sporting events where teams who have offensive and derogatory names or icons will play. Providing official support to teams such as the Washington Redskins or the Cleveland Indians is sending the message that our government supports the degradation of Native Americans. Further asking military members to support to these teams puts them in direct opposition to each of the services core values. While the president cannot direct these teams to change their names we can end military support.

  • Fan loyalty is not to a name but a team. Both collegiate and professional sports team have been asked for numerous years to change their offensive Native American names to names that were not offensive. Why is that a problem? I am a NYer and St Johns University changed their name from the Red men to the Red Storm. There was such an uproar when they were discussing the name change. Guess what…..fans got over it and everyone cheers with the same level of enthusiasm for the Red Storm. Let’s get passed false sense of tradition and focus on what is fair and what makes sense.

  • AyemAffrique

    Still up for debate is whether the term “redskin” is a racial slur or not; what is now beyond question is the original reason for the Washington football team’s moniker. The team began as the Boston Braves, which was a name shared by the baseball team in the same town (which subsequently moved to Milwaukee and then to Atlanta) and they played in the same stadium (just as there used to be 2 New York Giants teams for baseball and football, before the former moved to San Francisco in the 1950s). When the Boston Braves (football team) began playing in the Boston Red Sox’s stadium, the owner of the football team wanted to keep the mascot but call the team something similar to Red Sox: Redskins. It was not to honor the Native Americans, but was rather a marketing ploy. The owner even denied it was in honor of the coach at the time, :”Lone Star” Dietz, who was part Native American, and a couple of Native Americans on the team. Actually, if you look at a photo of George Preston Marshall, the racist owner of the team (they were the last football team to accept blacks among their players), he looks somewhat Native American himself, no?

  • Take away Inidan names and logos on all sports teams and High schools and colleges etc and Pro teams and America looses the Indian identity. I think the Inidan nation has it backwards – they should want to KEEP the names and icons etc. change the redskin name to something else if be but KEEP the Indian. The more and more the Inidans names are dropped from the spot light you are just pushing for the Indian to be forgotten. High school and colleges in my state have dropped the names or changes the names and now younger generations dont even speak of the Indians at all. Its quite a shame.

  • I think Native Americans should be honored that a football team wants to use their name If you would like to use my name Diane or Larry’s as the palefaces we would be honored

    • Luke Visconti

      Well, apparently they’re not. White privilege is what it’s called when you think your opinion trumps the will of entire nations. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • It appears that the only 2 arguments left for keeping the name are (1) It’s tradition, and (2) Don’t we have bigger things to worry about? (ie, get over it).

    Tradition often gets a pass because everybody has a positive connotation with it. But traditions perpetuating an injustice should be broken, and there’s plenty of (sorry) tradition for doing just that. Separate drinking fountains in the south was a tradition for decades. Women staying home to raise the kids and clean the house (and not vote) was a tradition for thousands of years. Children working in industry under the age of 14 was a tradition for hundreds of years (and continues to this day in some countries).

    Tradition doesn’t make it right. It just makes it harder to change.

    And yes, there are many problems in the world that have more harmful consequences than the name of an NFL team. This is the argument people use when they run out of real arguments. It’s a red herring. If they truly followed this mindset, they would never clean their house, mow their lawn, scratch an itch, or pay their credit card bill, at least not until communism is eradicated, world peace is achieved, cancer is cured, and the US government hums along without discord. The human mind can manage multiple problems at once, even (especially) those that are small, like this one. The people who use this argument also fail to recognize the irony in the effort they take to defend the R-word name, posting on message boards and facebook. Why take so much time to defend something you find so insignificant? Why not let the people who are (on both sides) passionate about, and personally affected, take over the discussion?

    The simple fact is the R-word is to Native Americans what the N-word is to blacks. “Negro” may have been acceptable 200 years ago; it no longer is. Trying to hold the R-word up as a tribute is like somebody saying “I love [n-word]s. They endured so much, and America would not be what it is without them. All hail to the [n-word]s!!”

    Changing the name is not about appeasing a few people. It’s about doing the right thing simply because it’s the right thing. Because we don’t need to have such discord when the fix is so simple. Because when the choice is between offending a few people (even when you don’t intend to) and not offending anybody by exerting a little effort, the decent action, the Christian thing to do is to not offend anybody.

    I know it’s unlikely my rant will change anybody’s mind, but over the last 2 years, my mind was changed on this topic, so I’m hopeful others will be as well.

    • Luke Visconti

      The problem with your sensible argument is that most of the people who are still fans of the team name would see nothing wrong with “I love N-words.” Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • Daniel Vargas

    Keep the logo, change the name to the Nation. Washington already has the Nationals playing baseball. It would be a good fit…I am half Native American.

  • Katie Flynn

    So rarely are we presented with issues that are truly no-brainers; ones that have easy answers. This is actually one of those times. But, for some reason we have allowed it to become excessively muddled and complicated. I think we’ve accomplished this by forgetting what it is truly about. It’s not about players or fans. In fact, it’s not even about football. It isn’t about pride and tradition. It’s not about stifling constitutional rights. It never was and, at its true core, it never will be. This is an issue of basic human decency; it’s about doing the right thing. It has to do with the same reasons we teach our kids not to call people names and to be respectful. We all know that the term in question is degrading and one of disrespect. The use of this term might not bother everyone, and it might not always be presented in a hurtful context, but is it really something we want to fight to protect? I’d like to believe that the human race has come further than that. The term, and all the history attached to it, is not something we should forget or ignore, but it’s also not something we should be exalting and praising in context of sports. They should change the name today. They should have changed it twenty years ago. I think in the future we’ll look back and be embarrassed that we allowed it to go on for so long.

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