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Powerful 2-Minute Video Protests Washington Redskins Mascot

There was a lot happening in the world of sports last week (NBA finals, Stanley Cup, World Cup opening game, etc.) but one of the most moving and interesting moments happened when The Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation bought airtime and ran a two-minute ad during the NBA finals, protesting the Redskins football mascot.

The ad aired in seven major cities during halftime of the NBA Finals Game 3. The one-minute spot criticizes the Washington Redskins football team name and mascot, and calls for it to be changed. The group also posted an extended two-minute version of the “Proud to Be” video to YouTube, which was produced by the National Congress of American Indians in January.

The spot, which the Californian tribe told the Washington Post was a “significant investment,” ran in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, Sacramento, San Francisco and Washington, and ran in Miami during Game 2. “It’s just a time to get people thinking about putting an end to outward hatred and using sports as a tool to focus on racism,” Marshall McKay, chairman of the Yocha Dehe Wintun tribal council, said in a video explaining the tribe’s involvement.

Team officials have always maintained that the name is not disparaging and that many Native Americans support it. But the argument has exploded lately, with 50 US senators writing to the NFL commissioner asking that the name be changed. A Washington Post poll from last year ago found that 61 percent of Washingtonians like the team’s name, with two-thirds saying that the team should not change it. Likewise, a national poll conducted by the Associated Press this January found that 83 percent of respondents agreed that the team should not change its name. But does it matter what the general public thinks? Shouldn’t we be listening to the people offended by the name?

“We applaud the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation for having the vision and commitment to ensure that the American public receives the message loud and clear that Native Americans strongly oppose the use of this disparaging slur,” NCAI Executive Director Jackie Pata and Oneida Indian Nation Representative Ray Halbritter said in a joint statement. “By airing this ad during the NBA Championships, this message for change will be brought into the living rooms of millions of American all across the country.”

If you think Washington should change their football mascot, sign the Care2 petition asking owner Daniel Snyder to do so.

Source: Washington Post

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Lo Lankford

Lo Lankford is a recent Los Angeles transplant after a decade in the Big Apple. In her "spare time" (ha!) she used to run a dog rescue called Badass Brooklyn and helped save over 400 dogs. Otherwise? Nerd'do well, whistle blower, proud hillbilly from the sticks.


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4:36AM PDT on Jun 22, 2014

Terri---the words nigger and gay meant something else years ago too....If they can't perform the same with a different name to honor others--what kind of team are they anyway?

4:34AM PDT on Jun 22, 2014

And how would people react if the teams name was Crackers or Niggers? No matter what the controversial past of the name was--what does it mean now?

7:37PM PDT on Jun 20, 2014

Thank you, Craig P, for your intelligent comment. I agree w/you 100%. Native Americans - as well as every other race in America - face real challenges today. Worrying about a sports teams' name shows how far down the ridiculous scale we have slid in this country. What a bunch of politically correct, lack of common sense wussies. Pretty soon one won't even be able to sneeze without someone implying it's offensive or desparaging. Those blabbing on about this nonsense need to wake up, grow up and buck up. How bored you must be to worry about something such as this. I think you people just want to stir up trouble. For nearly a century the team has gone by this name and it's suddenly an issue? Here's a suggestion - don't watch foitball or support Washington. Where does the line get drawn as to what's offensive? People want the word God taken off money; high school kids get sent home from school because they wear an shirt with an American flag on it on Cinco De Mayo, etc. Every time some small-minded chump with a chip on his/her shoulder gets upset about something, are we expected to kow-tow to them? I shudder to think of what's next.

8:18AM PDT on Jun 19, 2014

Thanks for sharing.

2:18PM PDT on Jun 18, 2014

Thanks, petition signed

12:27PM PDT on Jun 18, 2014


11:14AM PDT on Jun 18, 2014

News update:
"The United States Patent and Trademark Office has canceled the Washington Redskins trademark registration, calling the football team’s name “disparaging to Native Americans.”

11:02AM PDT on Jun 18, 2014

so sad that this team and some of their fans want to live in earlier centuries

12:38AM PDT on Jun 18, 2014

Since 1937 the team has used the name Washington Redskins. Now - 77 years later - it's offensive? This politically correct bandwagon has become way out of hand. I do not believe that anyone should be treated differently - whether it be better or worse - just because of skin color, religious preference or sexual orientation, etc. But one cannot even say boo these days without being labeled a racist. How is naming a team "Redskins" derogatory? What's next - the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be asked to change their team name because it's offensive to pirates?
The definition of racism is:
1. The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others.
2. Discrimination or prejudice based on race.
The team was not named Redskins because of a hatred toward Indians. Read a few articles about the inception of the team and how they chose their name.
People, there are much more important issues in this world - global warming, deforestation, child trafficking, child abuse, the exploitation and inhumane treatment of animals, a flailing economy, crime, cancer ... the list goes on. We need to tackle these important issues and stop being so thin-skinned and petty. This whole thing makes me wonder if some people are just that bored and looking for something to complain about.

7:18PM PDT on Jun 17, 2014


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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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