Will the Washington NFL team finally change their racist name & logo?

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Y’all know I don’t care at all about football or the NFL, which is a trash organization. But whenever I do pay attention to the NFL, I’m always struck by how many team owners are just committed to being the worst people in the world. So it is with Dan Snyder, who owns the Washington NFL team (whose name I do not want to type). The name of the team is offensive. This is not some new discussion – I truly remember a conversation about the team’s racist name when I was a little girl. There is zero reason for the Washington team to still have a blatantly racist name in the year of outlord and savior Beyonce 2020.

What’s interesting is that in the middle of the national/global conversation about Black Lives Matter, racism and racist power structures, we’re seeing all of these conversations pop up again with renewed vigor. Last week, the Washington team’s biggest sponsor (FedEx) put the team on notice and basically said that they need a new name. Nike pulled all of the team’s branded gear too. Minority stake owners in the franchise are looking to sell their stakes if there isn’t a name change. But Dan Snyder is still fighting it. The organization will only say that the name is under review:

Team owner Dan Snyder has resisted calls in the past to have the team name changed due to racist connotations, but the team announced on Friday that it would review the name.

“In light of recent events around our country and feedback from our community, the Washington Redskins are announcing the team will undergo a thorough review of the team’s name,” the team said in a statement. “This review formalizes the initial discussions the team has been having with the league in recent weeks.”

[From CNN]

Tons of sites and many fans have started pitching new names, and there are some popular names gaining traction: The Washington Redtails, the Washington Warriors and The Washington Monuments are all in the mix, at least for the fans. Does anyone else remember Rachel Maddow doing a segment on a potential name change years ago, and she had data to suggest that football fans will buy more NFL swag if their team has an animal name? I can’t see people dying to buy Washington Monuments gear. But I could definitely see people wanting to buy Washington Meerkats gear.

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26 Responses to “Will the Washington NFL team finally change their racist name & logo?”

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  1. Jay says:

    I assume the “review” is a face saving move (they will spend a lot of money to decide “huh, turns out the name IS offensive”). Schneider gets some kind of weird pride out of saying he’ll never change it, but hopefully the financial hit will be what finally moved things. The mayor of DC has also reportedly said he won’t get a new stadium if they keep the name.

    There have been so many tired stories over the years – the fans will say don’t “intend” offense, therefore any offense taken is your fault! Or that the name somehow “honours” indigenous people with an epithet.

    • Jay says:

      Oops, that’s “Snyder”, autocorrect!

    • MissMarierose says:

      I don’t have that much faith in Snyder. I think the “review” is just a stalling tactic meant to avoid having to make a decision now and wait out people who are currently paying attention to racial issues.
      I mean, look at how many times he sandwiched that offensive name into the press release unnecessarily.
      Dan Snyder is garbage.

      • Dutch says:

        Snyder is garbage, but he’s not dumb. Major sponsors are threatening to cancel contracts if the team doesn’t change its nickname. This is one of the rare cases where corporate self-interest converges with morality. This is not something Snyder can kick down the road. People are demanding accountability from companies on issues of social justice.

    • Ocean Girl says:

      From Jay’s post:

      “Or that the name somehow “honours” indigenous people with an epithet.”

      A conservative relative posted a link (to a poll) on facebook, claiming that Indigenous people are more honored than offended by such names. That statement is so absurd since indigenous groups are leading the movement to change these names!

  2. Lilly (with the double-L) says:

    It’s really far past time to do it, so c’mon and Matthew McConaughey better keep his mouth shut.

  3. JaneDoesWerk says:

    I live about 15 minutes from their headquarters in Virginia. Snyder is the worst owner in the NFL, I wish he’d sell the team already. He wanted a more urban stadium after seeing what the other DC sports teams have as far as fan participation, but the mayor won’t sign off on anything until he changes the name. Their best bet was Virginia but with the current climate I don’t see Northam it Hogan in Maryland signing off until a name change happens. Could be an opportunity to start fresh, they’ve been a mess the last few years. A rebrand would do them some good.

    • donut_nut says:

      I too live in the DMV, and the Washington football terrible is all-around terrible from the front office to the field. Snyder apparently is a terrible neighbor too. I wish he’d just finally be on the right side of history. This is an easy gain, easier than trying to put together a winning team but with far less effort. Sheesh. GO NATS

      • florencia says:

        “I too live in the DMV”.

        This made me giggle since it means “Department of Motor Vehicles” where I live. It’s the small things! xD

  4. Mellie says:

    This has been batted around for YEARS, it’s way past time for all these teams to get with the program. If something makes people feel bad or inferior, freaking change it. It’s sports. These people act like it’s life or death, it’s f#$king sports, change it already. Get creative and come up with something else. Remember the Washington Bullets? That team is now the Wizards. I like Wizards way better than Bullets…I guess I’m a nerd though.

  5. Sean says:

    The recent call for Washington’s NFL team to change their name made me curious enough to look up both the term and the team’s history.

    The term first came into use in the late 18th/early 19th century. Almost since its introduction, the term has been used to demean Native Americans. The word was first listed in Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary in 1898 as “often contemptuous.” https://www.merriam-webster.com/news-trend-watch/redskin-2013-11-01

    The football team was formed in 1932, originating in Boston. The team was first called the Boston Braves, like the baseball team and even used the same stadium (Braves Field) to host games. According to the Redskins Encyclopedia, the football team was moved to Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox. The owner, George Preston Marshall decided to change the team’s name to the derogatory term to “suggest a kinship with the Red Sox. He also wanted to connect with an Indian theme similar to the Braves.” He also hired William Henry “Lone Star” Dietz, who was thought to be part Sioux as the team’s head coach. Because that was somehow going to make it okay. https://www.google.com/books/edition/The_Redskins_Encyclopedia/W8pvThJ6lRMC?gbpv=1

    Boston was not much of a football town at the time so the team relocated to Washington DC, where it’s been since.

    The team’s original owner, George Preston Marshall was a racist. By 1961, the team was the only NFL organization without any black players. Under threat of legal action from the Kennedy Administration for civil rights violations as well as not being allowed to play in federally-owned DC Stadium (now RFK Stadium), Marshall relented. The team was the last NFL franchise to integrate in 1962. https://www.espn.com/page2/wash/s/2002/0305/1346021.html

    The team was founded by a racist which explains why it was given a name that was demeaning to Native Americans going back over a century before American football was even devised. Change the damn name.

  6. Joan Callamezzo says:

    They don’t need to change their racist name at all. They just need to change the mascot to a potato. Problem solved.

  7. Becks1 says:

    My husband listens to sports radio/podcasts basically nonstop and someone just came on whatever show he’s listening to and said that they have it on good authority that he’s privately said they’ll change the name, so if that’s true, at least that’s something. the name is awful and they should have changed it years ago.

    • ME says:

      I don’t understand why it was never changed. It’s ridiculous to ever have been used in the first place.

  8. Sayrah says:

    Good. Long overdue and I think in this climate it’s finally going to happen. Are the Indians and braves next in MLB?

  9. AnnaKist says:

    For decades, we in Australia have enjoyed a popular and very delicious, chewy lolly (candy) with this name, as well as chocolate-flavoured jelly babies with a 2020-questionable name. These names have not had the same racist connotation or connection for us, (although they probably should have), but in 2020, the manufacturers have rightly decided to change their names. We are so connected now, globally, that there’s no excuse or justification for such names to have any tie to any human. We need to, and can be, better and more clever than that.

  10. Sunday says:

    The Washington Racial Slurs really do need to change their name, but it’s fascinating to me how the focus has been on them so sharply. I mean yes, their name is the most ridiculous example because it’s like calling a team the New England N-Words. It’s very bad! It’s actually insane that fans are still defending it! But they’re not the only ones, and even if they do change their name, there’s plenty of more work to be done. Next up to the name change office need to be Cleveland, Atlanta, Kansas City, etc. etc. All these team names are awful and racist and have GOT to go because Indigenous people are precisely that: PEOPLE, not mascots.

  11. jaylee says:

    Our country has a history of atrocities that need discussion & reconciliation. It’s not sitting well with me how the BLM movement keeps getting lumped together with Native American reparations. I think it’s important that people know all 5 organized native nations owned slaves. Slaves they refused to free after the Emancipation Proclamation. Our history is filthy & complex but the notion that the oppression of Blacks & NA has some kind of bond or sameness is problematic.

    • Rosalee says:

      @Jaylee there are many more nations within North America than “5 organized native nations” there are approximately 578 different groups. My people the Anishinnabe were not slave owners, nor were the Cree, Nez Perce, Lakota, The Six Nations, The Iroquois Confederacy, groups from the east coast, northern groups etc. Obviously you have the issue as indicated by your erroneous statement. There is a serious lack of knowledge of the history of the Indigenous people..not Americans or Canadians but the First Peoples of this continent – We extend the courtesy of capitalizing the B as in Black you could extend the same courtesy buy using our name as we are not “native”

  12. FHMom says:

    Just change it. My towns high school mascot is the same and people are outraged that some students are calling for a name change. Really? These idiots graduated 30 years ago and they are outraged. Talking about school pride and how it’s bowing to political correctness to change the name. I swear I’m living in a hostile environment.

  13. Amelie says:

    This makes me so happy that my high school had a really stupid mascot which was a… wait for it… garnet!! As in the semi-precious stone. It’s like calling your team name the diamonds or the emeralds lol. Our biggest rival high school had a more exciting mascot name: the Huskies.

    It’s not just the Washington team that needs to change its name. There are the Cleveland Indians, Atlanta Braves, Kansas City Chiefs… quite a few actually. I’m sure Washington could come up with a better name than the one it already has. I like the Warriors because of the alliteration, I’m just wondering if that word might be a little too close to referring Native Americans due to the bloody history between Native Americans and the white settlers? Or maybe I’m being too sensitive.

    I also like the Redtails, is that a reference to the Redtailed Hawk? Because if it is, they could easily making their fan merch very exciting looking with a splashy red hawk design.

    • Jay says:

      @amelia, I believe the name redtails is mentioned as a tribute to the historic black airforce unit, as well as the hawk. That’s my favourite name, too!

      Not only would the organization make way more money in the long run by designing and selling new merch, but (sadly) they would also make a killing on “last chance” items bearing the old moniker – you know there are some people in trumplandia who will buy it to “own the libs”.

  14. Deathbybacon says:

    I the Washington Redtails as a name.