The dictionary-defined pejorative ‘Redskins’ was mentioned 27-percent less during NFL broadcasts this season, according to reports.
Timothy Burke of Deadspinreportedthat announcers said the word 472 fewer times in the 2014-15 regular season.
Meanwhile, use of the word ‘Washington’ to identify the team slightly increased during broadcasts. In 2014, ‘Washington’ was mentioned 1,390 times. In 2013, it was mentioned 1,380.
The team itself has been mired in controversy over its use and defense of its name. In June, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office stripped the team of six of its seven trademarks, finding the word to be “disparaging to Native Americans.”
Since then, a growing chorus of dignitaries, celebrities and former players have called on team owner Dan Snyder to change the name. Former Secretary of State and possible 2016 presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton called the team name “insensitive”, and even President Barack Obama said if he were the owner of the team he would consider changing the name.
Snyder said he will “NEVER” change the name.
On Dec. 28, The Washington PostAssociate Editor Bob Woodward predicted on FOX News Sunday that Snyder will sell the team this year to either Apple or Google.
“Danny Snyder, the owner of the Redskins, who’s had past success in business, will realize he’s part of the problem,” he said, “and he’s going to sell it; he’s going to sell the Redskins and the bidding war is going to be between Apple and Google. Think of it — the ‘Washington Apples’?”
“It’s come up before, and it’s the most ridiculous thing that you could ever have” Moseley said of the debate. “We just thought it would blow over. But this time it hasn’t blown over. They’ve managed to get to some people that have a voice, some people with a little power, and they’ve made it into something that it’s not. And so we decided as alumni that we were going to get out and find out for sure. I mean, we don’t want to do something that’s hurting somebody’s feelings or it’s not the right thing … so we decided to take it upon ourselves to find out.
“I personally grew up with the Alabama-Coushatta Indians down in Texas,” Moseley went on. “They were 10 minutes outside of town. So I’ve been around Indians all my life, and when I came to the Washington Redskins it was elation in the reservation. They loved the fact that I was playing for the Indians. They considered it an honor.
“And so we were really upset with the fact that they’re trying to tell us that all these years we’ve been playing under a name that was derogatory to someone,” he said. “We’ve interviewed over a thousand people. We’ve talked to over a thousand Indians. And not one, not even one has said anything about it being derogatory to them. I even went up to one of them face-to-face that I didn’t even know, and I asked him, I said point blank, ‘If I came up and I called you a Redskin would you be insulted?’ And he said, ‘Absolutely not, I take great pride in being an American Indian, being called a Redskin.’ So to me, it’s bogus.”
Later, Parker asked Moseley what he thought about the people who have said they are offended by the name.
“If it was Indians, then I would be concerned,” Moseley said. “But everyone that’s said anything to me has been a white man or a black man. No red men have said anything derogatory to me about it.”
Parker also read Moseley some dictionary definitions indicating the word could be offensive.
“You can get offended by anything,” Moseley said. “I can get offended by what somebody’s saying to me. But the Redskins, if we start changing, to me they’re attacking my amendment rights that I have. To me, the name Redskins is something that does not offend anybody. The Redskins are not being hurt, the Indians are not being hurt by this, they’re telling us that. I mean, are we going to believe the white man or are we going to believe the Indian when it comes to a subject that is supposedly affecting them? They’re the ones we need to listen to. We need to pay attention to what they’re saying, and not what some of these other people are saying, and listen to where their hearts are.”
Moseley also said that “all these reservations, almost 90 percent of them have an organization on their reservation called the Redskins, that use that as their rallying cry. Schools, almost every reservation has a school that has an organization on it called the Redskins.”
I don’t believe that’s actually true, although there certainly are several majority-Native American schools that use the name. Moseley also said some good has come out of the debate, because “we’ve found out how really deplorable” the conditions are for some Native Americans.
“And it’s ridiculous that we as Americans are letting them and making them, almost forcing them to have to live this way,” he said. “It was very much an eye-awakening trip for those of us that have not been on a reservation in a while.”
As for the suggestion that the Redskins were buying support on reservations, Moseley rejected that outright.
“The fact is that they need help and we’re giving it to them,” he said. “And we’re not trying to buy [them]. We talked to people before we even did anything for them, and we got the same answer. So that’s bogus. That doesn’t even come into the ballgame here. But we as alumni feel that it’s important that we make sure that if we’re going to follow this, and if the Redskins are going to continue to be called the Redskins, we need to make sure — and Mr. Snyder wanted to make sure — that no one is being hurt. And we found out that they’re not.
“I really get upset. I get mad, because people are trying to say that I’ve been using a racist name,” he said.
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — A group of American Indians wants a court to preserve and eventually release an investigative file containing inappropriate emails sent by a federal judge, including a racist message involving President Barack Obama.
Two Indian advocacy groups from Montana and South Dakota and a member of the Crow tribe filed a petition in U.S. District Court in California asking for the file to be preserved as evidence.
The groups want to know if Chief District Judge Richard Cebull made biased decisions from the bench. Their next step will be to file a lawsuit seeking public release of the documents, plaintiffs’ attorney Lawrence Organ said Wednesday.
Cebull was investigated after forwarding a racist message involving Obama. A judicial review panel found he sent hundreds of emails from his federal account that showed disdain for blacks, Indians, Hispanics, women, certain religions and others. He was publicly reprimanded and retired last year.
The investigation found no evidence of bias in his rulings. Organ said the only way to know that for sure is through the release of the emails.
“The fundamental principles of our entire legal system fall apart if a judge doesn’t come in with a neutral position,” Organ said. “If there are other decision makers involved, we’re not asking for their private email accounts. All we want to see are the emails accounts they used as government officials.”
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has said its file on Cebull is confidential.
Plaintiffs in the case are South Dakota-based advocacy group Four Directions, Montana-based Indian People’s Action, and Sara Plains Feather, a member of southeastern Montana’s Crow Tribe.
Four Directions was involved in a voting rights lawsuit that sought to force several Montana counties to establish satellite voting districts on reservations. Cebull ruled against the Indian plaintiffs in that case, which was later settled after the 9th Circuit overturned his ruling.
Cebull himself and 10 others requested the misconduct investigation after The Great Falls Tribune reported the judge forwarded an email in February 2012 that included a joke about bestiality and Obama’s mother. Cebull apologized to Obama after the contents of that email were published.
The investigation looked at four years of Cebull’s personal correspondence sent from his official email account.
Cebull told the 9th Circuit panel that his “public shaming has been a life-altering experience.” Nominated by former President George W. Bush, he received his commission in 2001 and served as chief judge of the District of Montana from 2008 until 2013.
Named as defendants in the case were the office of 9th Circuit Executive Cathy Catterson and the Committee on Judicial Conduct of the Judicial Conference of the United States.
Ninth Circuit spokesman David Madden said he could not comment on the pending petition.
The plaintiffs attempted in May to directly petition the 9th Circuit. That was rejected by the court’s clerk, who said the petition needed to be filed first at the district court level.
Ian Campeau, better known as Deejay NDN of A Tribe Called Red, is an outspoken cultural critic, both as official mouthpiece of the DJ trio and a twitter provocateur. Campeau was instrumental in getting the Nepean Redskins football club to change its name (they’re now the Nepean Eagles), and sports mascots is one of his favorite topics to discuss.
It has to be a sign that you’re being heard when an irony-impaired curmudgeon calls for a boycott.
In a recent Instagram post, Campeau shared a note apparently written to the organizers of Westfest, a music and arts festival taking place June 13-15 in Ottawa’s Westboro Village. A Tribe Called Red is scheduled to play the final concert Sunday night.
“So we’re supposed to play Westfest next Sunday,” Campeau wrote. “The organizers have been receiving thinly-veiled threatening emails in protest to me performing. Here’s one of them. This is my hometown. So disappointing.”
Here’s the image of the letter, in which a critic complains, anonymously that the group is “divisive” and that Campeau is a “racist hypocrite” who wears a “racist t-shirt”:
A letter calling for a boycott of Westfest over A Tribe Called Red’s “racism.”
We’ve seen Campeau in a few different ironic t-shirts over the years, but the one that this individual is referring to is likely the “Caucasians” design (sold by Shelf Life Clothing), featuring a white version of the Cleveland Indians’ controversial Chief Wahoo mascot. Campeau wears the shirt in some frequently-used publicity photos:
The Oneida Indian Nation is taking its ‘Change the Mascot’ campaign a step further.
On Monday, October 7th, the Nation plans to convene in Washington, D.C. to hold a public conference calling on the NFL and its teams to end the use of the slur, Redskins.
The conference, which will be held in the Ritz Carlton, in the same hotel as the NFL’s Fall Meeting, is open to the public and press.
This conference comes just weeks after the Nation broadcast its “Change the Mascot” radio advertisements, and months after students at Cooperstown Central School District in Cooperstown, New York, made national news by voting to change their teams’ name from ‘Redskins’ to the ‘Hawkeyes.’
“As proud sponsors of the NFL, we are encouraged by how many leaders are standing up, speaking out and joining the grassroots effort to get the Washington team to do the right thing and change its name,” said Oneida Indian Nation Representative Ray Halbritter in an earlier news release.
The Nation, along with U.S. Lawmakers: Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-District of Columbia), Betty McCollum (D-Minnesota), and special guests hope to spur a discussion that will lead to change.
“We should be treated as what we are: Americans,” Halbritter said.
The Chicago Blackhawks are currently tangling with the Boston Bruins in a so-far thrilling Stanley Cup Finals clash between the two Original Six clubs. The first two games have been fast, tense, exciting, both going to overtime, with each team claming a victory. Game 3 is tonight in Boston (8 p.m./ET, NBCSN; check local listings to confirm coverage in your area) and it should be another fun night of hockey.
Through all the championship chatter, though, one interesting question seems to be going unanswered–or even asked: Why isn’t Chicago taking heat for their Indian logo and name like the Washington Pigskins do? The club is in the spotlight again, after winning the 2010 Stanley Cup, so that famous Blackhawks logo is everywhere right now. But they seem to get a pass. Is some Native imagery okay? Who decides?
One commentor, however, is taking a look at this lack of controversy. Today, CBS Chicago’s Tim Baffoe posted the column “Should the Blackhawks Ditch Their Indian Head Logo?”
“[Why] isn’t the Indian head logo more often a topic of conversation when it comes to offensive sports imagery? Why isn’t the organization in the Stanley Cup Final almost ever asked to justify it,” asks Baffoe.
He answers his questions, in part, by writing, “The Hawks don’t use a caricature or slur that other teams have come under fire for. In fact, there is almost zero Native American ‘stuff’ used by the organization other than just their very famous logo. I don’t mind the Blackhawks Indian head logo. Hell, I’d say it looks pretty badass.”
For those unfamiliar with the history of the Blackhawks name, here’s a quick history via The New York Times: “The Blackhawks’ founder was Maj. Frederic McLaughlin, whose family owned Manor House Coffee, a popular brand in the first half of the 20th century. McLaughlin named the team after the Blackhawk division, a unit he helped lead as an officer in the Army. It was formed during World War I, but the war ended before the unit, or McLaughlin, saw action. The unit was named for a Sauk and Fox American Indian leader who fought against the United States government in the War of 1812 and in 1832.” (For more on Chief Black Hawk, click here.) The team’s immmensly popular Blackhawks Indian head logo was created by Irene Castle, wife of McLaughlin, in 1926 at the team’s inception into the NHL.
Read Baffoe’s column by clicking here. And please share your thoughts on the Blackhawks logo with ICTMN by commenting below.