A Name to be Proud Of
3/13/2013, 4:30 p.m.
They're our home team. We're with them when they win and we refuse to abandon them when they lose. We want them to be the best team in the National Football League, and we put lots of money behind them by purchasing season tickets, hosting elaborate tailgate parties and collecting every piece of sports paraphernalia bearing their name that we can afford. But as regularly as the football seasons come and go, so does the reoccurring debate over the name of Washington's beloved football team.
While appeals to owners to change the team's name have been repeatedly denied, so have the numerous court battles that have been equally unsuccessful. But representatives of Native American's rights groups and others who support the cause to eliminate racially insensitive and demeaning mascots from major league teams will not give up. Blackhorse et al v. Pro-Football, Inc., is the most recent case brought by young Native Americans who seek to abolish Washington's football team's mascot forever. Forget the past. If Wisconsin can do away with racially insensitive team names, then why can't we?
Despite the love for our team, it's becoming more difficult to express it when those who are impacted by its vile and offensive name stand up. Despite the team's unquestionable good will throughout the region, it's irrelevant when the name itself points to our nation's horrific and racist past against its own people. And, a Super Bowl victory will silence protestors concerns but only for a moment before they mobilize and mount their next attempt to right a wrong.
While our team works hard to bring back the national championship title, team owners should also work hard to make an historic human rights decision - giving our team a name that we all can feel proud of.