REDSKINS name

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The Breeze
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by The Breeze » Thu Jun 20, 2013 2:40 pm

MelanieMFunk wrote:
Yeah. Admittedly, I don't know a whole lot about the issue. I don't think the Redskins should have to change their name because of a handful of people getting upset about it. But if they do...oh well. It doesn't affect me any. I just don't see it happening. That's all. If it was going to happen, I think it would have happened long ago. Not that, "Well...it's been this way for so long. We're just used to it. It's okay. It's fine. Get over it." is a great excuse or reasoning...but I think that's how it's going to go down.
I don't see a name change either, because that wouldn't solve the problem anyway. It's a point of reference to bring up the bigger issues that are difficult to deal with.

So, I think that it being talked about is cool, because there will always be those people who learn more about the actual history as a result.
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by Cliff » Thu Jun 20, 2013 2:54 pm

The Breeze wrote: And that is exactly what Alexie is talking about when he says that Natives have no power in our culture. It's less true today than when the Redskins first got their name...but's it's still true.

The more I understand the issue I see that it's not the words that offend. It's the misrepresentation of native culture that all the symbols and caricatures represent. There aren't many modern Native American role models. Crazy Horse, Geronimo, Sitting Bull? That's not reality to kids growing up on the Rez.
Exactly.

The problem isn't that "Red Skin" is the worst possible thing you could say to a Native American, In my opinion. It's a reminder that their voices aren't loud enough in this country to merit the consideration. It would never be appropriate to have a "minor" racial slur as a team logo for Jewish people or black people in this country, for example.

A team named the "BlackSkins" with an African warrior made up in "black face" as a mascot wouldn't stand up ... even if it had been around the last 80 years. Even though "BlackSkin" isn't even a real racial slur and "RedSkin" is.

The only difference is that American Indians don't have a real voice ... and that's the slap in the face to those offended.

At least that seems to be the case.
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by S197 » Thu Jun 20, 2013 9:37 pm

MelanieMFunk wrote: I agree. And I just feel like if this was SUCH an issue, they wouldn't have been able to name them "The Redskins" in the first place.
You have to keep the time period in context. They were renamed from the Boston Braves to the Boston Redskins in 1933. To put that in perspective, the Civil Rights Act was not passed until 1964, over three decades later.
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by glg » Thu Jun 20, 2013 10:03 pm

The Breeze wrote:I don't believe the Washington Redskin name is an attempt to marginalize or offend...rather the opposite, it's a symbol of pride.
While that may be the case today, you might want to read up on Redskins founder George Preston Marshall before believing that's been the case throughout their history, which would include the original naming of the team. Marshall was very much a racist and was the reason the Redskins were the last NFL team to integrate, only doing so after DC threatened to pull the lease on RFK.
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by The Breeze » Thu Jun 20, 2013 11:37 pm

glg wrote: While that may be the case today, you might want to read up on Redskins founder George Preston Marshall before believing that's been the case throughout their history, which would include the original naming of the team. Marshall was very much a racist and was the reason the Redskins were the last NFL team to integrate, only doing so after DC threatened to pull the lease on RFK.

I know about Marshall's racism as it's well documented. I did a little search and interestingly enough, the Redskins first head coach was named Lone Star Dietz who claimed to be part Sioux Indian. So, while Marshall had no love for African-Americans it's entirely possible he had genuine admiration for Native Americans. I don't think anyone would name their team something they didn't like just to show hostility to an entire culture of people.

I think ,in a lot of ways, Anglo-Americans have a deep respect for the strength of Native cultures because their own cultures are so fractured.....and guilt laden. But that's just like, my opinion,...man

Anyway, the wiki page I found Lone Star Dietz on also had this to say about the "proud symbol vs racial sterotype" debate:
There is much debate whether the use of the word Redskin is acceptable as a name for a sports team. Clarence Page of the Orlando Sentinel wrote in 1992 "[The Washington Redskins] are the only big time professional sports team whose name is an unequivocal racial slur. After all, how would we react if the team was named the Washington Negroes? Or the Washington Jews? ... It is more than just a racial reference, it is a racial epithet." Larry Dolan, owner of the Cleveland Indians, has criticized the Redskins' team name during a discussion of his own team's controversial Native American logo, Chief Wahoo.[3] According to Dolan, "if we were the Redskins, the day after I owned the team the name would have been changed".[3]

The unofficial mascot of the team is an African American man, Zema Williams (aka Chief Zee), who has attended games since 1978 dressed in a red faux Indian costume complete with feathered war bonnet and tomahawk. It is not unusual for other fans to attend games in similar costume.[4]

Many others believe that the name is a positive reference to the culture of Native Americans. Many Redskins fans say that it is a reference to the strength and courage of Native Americans. Some scholars counteract this argument by saying that any stereotype, whether positive or negative, is a hindrance to the advancement of a group. Scott B. Vickers quotes Susan Harjo "the use of any stereotype in the portrayal of Indians is considered ... to be contributory to their dehumanization and deracination."

The stereotyping of Native Americans must be understood in the context of history which includes conquest, forced relocation, and organized efforts to eradicate native cultures, such as the boarding schools of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, which separated young Native Americans from their families in order educate them as Euro-Americans.[5] "Since the first Europeans made landfall in North America, native peoples have suffered under a weltering array of stereotypes, misconceptions and caricatures. Whether portrayed as noble savages, ignoble savages, teary-eyed environmentalists or, most recently, simply as casino-rich, native peoples find their efforts to be treated with a measure of respect and integrity undermined by images that flatten complex tribal, historical and personal experience into one-dimensional representations that tells us more about the depicters than about the depicted." [6](Carter Meland (Anishinaabe heritage) and David E. Wilkins (Lumbee) are professors of American Indian Studies at the University of Minnesota)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Washington ... ontroversy

What I find fascinating is that the real issue isn't the name of a team, it's the complete lack of respect for Native's in general. Imagine the outrage for a name like the Mississippi Cottonpickers, or The Tennessee Tar-babys. It would be completely unacceptable to even suggest such a thing because everyone is now taught how wrong slavery/racism is/was and affirmative action/Rooney rule and all that.....Yet no one in our Government has ever even bothered apologizing to the Native Americans for what amounts too attempted genocide and long list of broken treaties. And to top it off, capitalists, protected by that same government, are given the right to use their conquered image...like an animal head above the fireplace.

I know it's said that it's a minority who have expressed being offended...but I think most should be offended at what has become of our indigenous people. But they aren't cause they aren't ed-ja-macated. I tell people who want to go visit a 3rd world country to just visit Pine Ridge or the Navajo Nation.

anyway...enough ranting. This topic gets me worked up.
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by King James » Fri Jun 21, 2013 2:23 am

Well I dont think any native american would like to be called a redskin sooooooooooo. I remember a while back some native americans were trying to get the NFL to get the Skins to change their name but failed. I do agree now in this generation, that Redskins name isn't meant for racism but you have to look at it from the Native American shoes. Just like joking. Everyone loves to joke but when the joke is on you it's not that funny to you anymore.

And that's probably how they feel about the Redskins name. The term Redskins was already a racial slur when the word first came about. But hey nothing to do about it now huh? Plus the Redskins have so much history with that name that changing it won't be the same for the team.
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by S197 » Fri Jun 21, 2013 5:46 pm

This reminds me of the Chris Rock bit:

http://youtu.be/AQRTirco4Mg

(NSFW: Language)
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by Hunter Morrow » Sun Sep 08, 2013 9:27 am

This is just White Elitism. "White Man's Burden" stuff. White people get to take this goofy, token stance about a child's game and pretend that they are "uplifting the savages" that they nearly exterminated.

Meanwhile, almost every Indian I've talked about Chiefs, Braves and Redskins as names doesn't care about it.

The offensive mascot stuff is at the height of its stupidity on college campus where uptight people in power take away a purportedly disgraceful mascot...
And 80+ percent of the campus immediately wants it back.

It all ends with a lame bird or cat mascot. Would you like to watch the Washington Leopards or the Washington Purple Grosbeaks?
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by indianation65 » Sat Oct 12, 2013 11:03 pm

Unfortunately this engine will keep gaining steam year after year, team after team. Some will succumb, and many people will continue to allow themselves the wear the "victim" skin.

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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by vikeinmontana » Sun Oct 20, 2013 10:16 pm

personally, I have a general rule of thumb in regards to stuff like this. I don't take offense to much myself. I have thick skin and very little bothers me. that said, I am a white male. I haven't lived in the shoes of any other race or faced any type of discrimination really. I just think it is poor taste to tell other people what they should and should not be offended about. if a large group of native americans says that this word is discrimatory and it offends them...who the hell am I to tell them, "no it's not and no it doesn't".

now, i'm not saying that any time a group complains about something the powers that be need to change. but I always find it amusing that people are so opinionated that they feel they can tell others what to think. do people think this group of native americans is just making things up and they are not truly bothered by the word? are they just complaining to complain?

I guess I think that in 2013 we need to be smarter and more accepting of everyone. is this a battle really worth fighting? with all the terrible crap that goes on every day i'd like to see people picking their battles better. and this goes for both sides. but if someone says that they are offended by something, I think they deserve the respect that they truly are offended and not just making up reasons to complain.

:confused:
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by dead_poet » Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:12 am

Impressive proposal for Washington name change: http://www.behance.net/gallery/Washingt ... l/11458543
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by Funkytown » Thu Oct 31, 2013 10:55 am

dead_poet wrote:Impressive proposal for Washington name change: http://www.behance.net/gallery/Washingt ... l/11458543
I like it. Curious to see how this all plays out. It's not going away, that's for sure.
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by nightowl » Fri Nov 01, 2013 1:21 pm

I have very simplistic way of viewing this. If it wouldn't be a socially acceptable suggestion tomorrow, we shouldn't accept it as tradition today. In other words, if we live in a world where nobody would dare suggest the name Redskins for a new team, why do we accept it as a name for an existing team? Things change, so should that Team Name.
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by IrishViking » Sat Nov 02, 2013 11:24 am

nightowl wrote:I have very simplistic way of viewing this. If it wouldn't be a socially acceptable suggestion tomorrow, we shouldn't accept it as tradition today. In other words, if we live in a world where nobody would dare suggest the name Redskins for a new team, why do we accept it as a name for an existing team? Things change, so should that Team Name.

Yeah it is striking to me how every argument for this usually breaks down into either A) grandfathering it in. B) anecdotal references to personally knowing .001% of the native population isn't offended.


I'll just toss out my two cents. I went to school in Bemidji. Not only are there a lot of Native Americans up there. They have a strong sense of national pride, thanks in part to places like Red Lake and leaders like Winona LaDuke. All of the Native Americans I knew up there thought it was a stupid ignorant name. They were smart enough not to be offended by it but didn't get why people clung to a racial profiling tool as name for a team.
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Re: REDSKINS name

Post by HornedMessiah » Sat Nov 02, 2013 2:34 pm

hibbingviking wrote:could be embarrassing worse changing the name to something stupid like the new Orleans pelicans.
Well, see that actually makes sense because...apparently there are a lot of Pelicans down there. The brown pelican is the state bird of Louisianna. Makes more sense than some of the ridiculous mascot/location mismatches like Utah Jazz, Cincinnati Bengals, Detroit Lions, LA LAKERS, the list goes on and on...

So, if they're going to change it (which seems inevitable at this point), they should go something that's authentic and fits the Washington DC area. Maybe one of these:

Washington Windbags
Washington Snakes
Washington Do-Littles
Washington Shutdowns
Washington Embarrassments
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