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.”
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.
Photos courtesy of Getty.