COMMENTARY: I Agree With Obama, Redskins Should Drop Offensive Nickname

Comments: 12  | Leave A Comment
  • advertisement
  • President Barack Obama took a break from a week-long government shutdown to weigh in on perhaps the second-most contentious issue in the nation’s capital: Changing the Washington Redskins nickname.

    “If I were the owner of the team and I knew that the name of my team — even if they’ve had a storied history — was offending a sizable group of people, I’d think about changing it,” Obama told the Associated Press during an interview.

    I agree with Obama.

    With his ground-breaking comments, Obama has made history once again: He is perhaps the first sitting president to say he would consider changing the Washington Redskins nickname – and his truth could not have come at a better time in the debate.

    “All these mascots and team names related to Native Americans, Native Americans feel pretty strongly about it,” Obama said Saturday. “And I don’t know whether our attachment to a particular name should override the real, legitimate concerns that people have about these things.”

    Obama is using his second term in office – and his White House bully pulpit — to confront racism and, in this case, the president is calling out the Redskins for its racially offensive nickname.

    The Washington Redskins nickname is not only offensive – it’s racist. Native Americans have argued for years that the name offends them, but Redskins owner Dan Snyder has refused requests from Native Americans and others to change the name, which originated during the 1930s.

    But take a moment to reflect on the magnitude of Obama’s statement.

    As America’s first black president who has already told the nation that he has experienced racial discrimination and outright bigotry, Obama now wades into a highly emotional issue where he is essentially firing a shot over Synder’s bow by using five simple yet powerful words: “If I were the owner…”

    Obama is a brilliant politician. He doesn’t make statements on the fly; he doesn’t utter comments without thinking it through; and he certainly would not inject himself into this hornet’s nest if he didn’t feel passionate about the cause. The president could have simply said nothing and let others argue the issue.

    But he didn’t.

    So why should Obama bother to talk about a sports issue and the Redskins changing its nickname? Because it’s not just a sports story – the “Redskins” nickname is a longstanding symbol of how American citizens are still being demeaned and who better to support Native Americans than America’s first black president.

    “As the first sitting president to speak out against the Washington team name, President Obama’s comments are truly historic,” said Oneida Indian Nation representative Ray Halbritter. “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.”

    1 2 Next page »

    Tags: » »

    • More Related Content

    Comments

    12 thoughts on “COMMENTARY: I Agree With Obama, Redskins Should Drop Offensive Nickname

    1. If not now, when? The time is right to talk about the issues of racially inflammatory names used to brand teams or merchandise. If it is considered derogatory, insulting and demeaning to our Native American brothers and sisters it is imperative to support their cause and concern. Our beloved country, which is the land of the free and the home of the brave, unfortunately has an uncomplimentary history of disregarding the rights and concerns for people of color. It is important to have the conversation and take the high road of making long overdue changes to issues and practices that are considered discriminatory. Money nor misguided traditions should not impede a moral imperative.

    2. The President should worry about being the president and getting the economy running- hell how about getting the government running again!? Besides, Redskins or any other indian moniker is not offensive. The government uses indian names in the names of all their attack helicopters! Kiowa, Blackhawk, Apache and Iroquois etc. We would complain if the named the team the Washington White Men or Ku Kluxers! The Redskin football team is a private “business” and they can name themselves whatever they feel. …always tryna tell somebody else how to run their shit…dayum!

    3. Look out, Cleveland “Browns”! They’re coming after you next! Sheesh! Redskin it not a ‘racial’ name; it’s a descriptor, like ‘redskin’ peanuts. Guess that has to be changed, too. My family is part Indian (Cherokee and Blackfoot), and our skin has a definite reddish tint – especially when we’re in the sun a long time. And if someone points it out, we don’t care. We think it’s pretty. Heck, my Grandpa’s nickname was “Red.” Everybody called him that. He’d tell the whiners to get a life!

    4. Redskins, Seminoles and other Native American references, in my opinion, are a tribute to the courage bravery of the Indian Warriors. A many battles were won.
      Just an opinion

    5. If the President really want to cease from offending Native Americans, and do the right thing, he could start by turning this country back over to its rightful owner. After all, according to a recent study, most Native Americans stated that they do not find the name “Redskins” offensive. All it takes are a few agitators to manufacture fake public outrage. Furthermore, if you notice, it is not the people that suppose to be offended making the most noise; it’s those that have determine to speak on their behalf. Find something meaningful to whine about.

    6. It’s just a commentary people, geez, get a grip and stay on the subject! And it has nothing to do with the DC shooting, so how that relates is beyond me. I commend the president speaking up against a wrong, no matter how old it is. If it was a slur against blacks, then would you care more? This name is a racial slur, and at the time, owners were racist, plain and simple. Black & Native have been banned from most places, especially sports team (know your history). Decades later, it’s just accepted and the meaning of the word is buried under the screams of cheering fans who are clueless about the whole issue. Native Americans are ignored by most of the country and I support their fight.

    7. … shucks … how’s about changing the name “Indianapolis” to … “New Islamabad” … ‘ya think BO would like that?

    8. At this point it don’t matter. Overall just more BS talk and hype,pretending and acting.
      Instead of this,how about saying something concerning how that black woman was executed in the car. There is a clip supposedly where they took the baby out the car,then shot this woman.
      If they had enough time to take the baby out. They had more than enough to arrest this woman without killing her.

    Add Your Comment

    Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

    WordPress.com Logo

    You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

    Twitter picture

    You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

    Facebook photo

    You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

    Google+ photo

    You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

    Connecting to %s