It has been an ongoing battle between the Native American community, lets rephrase this, it has been an ongoing battle for EVERYBODY who finds the teams name embarrassing and insensitive, so can someone tell the Redskins to change their name already?. While the owner of the Washington Redskins clings on to this derogatory namesake the climate around him continues to grow against his favor. Over the years, addressing racism in this country has never been easy. Especially for those promoting the sickness through their actions or blatant disregard to people who they are insulting. After years of pleading the Native American community has made substantial ground on the issue at hand with the Washington Redskins. Forcing owner Dan Snyder to reevaluate his position on keeping the name and the historic legacy that has been tied with it. For many it seems like an easy adjustment but financially it can be an expensive road to travel especially with the historic value the team and the name ‘Redskins’ has generated. We are talking 50+ years of screaming fans who have unknowingly promoted a brand that shows insensitivity towards another race of people.
I don’t blame the fans for their lack of information but now that the veil has been pulled from their eyes, I find it very difficult to understand why they still support the team in the manner that they do. A team who hasn’t been competitive in several years still wants to promote an image that demeans another set of people —the understanding is beyond me. Changing the mascot cannot be as difficult as Dan Snyder makes it. The New Orleans Pelicans switched over from the New Orleans Hornets before the beginning of the 2014 season and it has worked out pretty smooth. The excuse can’t be that it won’t work.
As the league becomes more and more scrutinized with the problems with domestic violence by players, alcohol and drug related issues with players off the field, the fact that they will allow acknowledged disrespect to continue to infect the league is a bit confusing. When it comes to player discipline the NFL has strict policies but when the insubordination/classlessness comes from the ownership side their reaction has been much more delayed. Changing a mascot has been done before. There have been 8 programs who have dropped the name “Redskins” around the country. Many of which are highschools and colleges. I believe the professional team should be leading by example not wallowing behind hoping the Native American Community gives up on the fight.
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I believe 2016 will be the year we see a change. The Washington team can utilize other alternative mascots and keep their legendary color scheme of gold and burgundy. The switch doesn’t have to be this sophisticated transition but a simple fix is undoubtedly needed. There are dog breeds that are specific to the Maryland, D.C. area that could substitute easily. A boxer which has not been used as team mascot would be an awesome switch and serve a larger purpose than just being a mascot. A dog would be a wonderful mascot alternative because they are the true representation of loyalty. I think it could work for the Washington organization.
In order to change the world, we have to reject those who continue to disregard human emotion. The fact that people feel disrespected by the mascot is reason enough to change it. The NFL needs to take a bigger role in the process or risk losing another piece of their loyal fan base. Action speaks volumes and the leagues lack of action is starting to become another indication of an atmosphere that seems to care only when it starts to reflect on the reputation of the shield. I love football but I love people the most and we have reached the point where change is needed. Let go of the name please!