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Saturday, February 1, 2014

Proud To Be (not a Redskin)

This is THE BEST video on Native American identity, watch it:

No Honor

Here is some background history to racist logos:

Cleveland Indians are Hurting Their Bottom Line

"Redskins": A Native's Guide To Debating An Inglorious Word
The "Redskins" debate is similar to the "nigger" debate, yet unlike with the "nigger" debate, outsiders feel perfectly comfortable telling Native people how they should feel. I suppose that's the most frustrating part of the debate—that we Native people, the folks who are the only meaningful stakeholders in this debate—are not allowed to have a voice in the matter. Correct that: We can have an opinion so long as it is pro-Redskin. Otherwise, we're being "too sensitive."

Yet, there is a crucial difference: It is black folks who debate the merits and demerits of the word "nigger." White folks understand that, as a matter of propriety, it would be the ultimate in tastelessness and disrespect to take the lead in the discussion of the word "nigger." Yet, here are outsiders—black, white, Asian, Latino—telling Native people how we should feel about the word "redskins" and what we should be offended by. If white people tried to pull the "we're going to tell you what words you should be offended by" shit with the word "nigger," there would, as NWA eloquently put it above, be serious problems. Apparently, though, while it's racist and condescending to tell some people what should offend them, it's somehow OK to do the same with Native people.

‘Redskins’ Opponents Tackle Bipartisan Outrage, Bipartisan Ignorance
Native Americans of all political stripes have been taking this issue on for decades before President Barack Obama lent his support to changing the name in a recent Associated Press interview. Conservative members of Congress, including House leadership team member Tom Cole (R-Oklahoma), have pressed the NFL to get rid of the racist name. Even tea party member and Cherokee Nation citizen Markwayne Mullin (R-Oklahoma) has reportedly told his pals that he has experienced culture shock in seeing the name and mascot plastered everywhere in Washington, D.C. since being elected to Congress last fall.  “Native Americans throughout the country consider the term ‘redskin’ a racial, derogatory slur akin to the ‘N-word' among African Americans or the ‘W-word' among Latinos,” Cole and nine other lawmakers wrote in a letter earlier this year to team owner Daniel Snyder. “Such offensive epithets would no doubt draw widespread disapproval among the NFL's fan base. Yet the national coverage of Washington's NFL football team profits from a term that is equally disparaging to Native Americans.” 

AIM Minneapolis Will Protest When Redskins Play Vikings November 7
On October 14, two affiliated AIM (American Indian Movement) groups, the AIM of Twin Cities and AIM Patrol of Minneapolis, released a statement condemning the use of the name "Redskins" by the Washington NFL team, and soon thereafter announced plans for a public protest when the team comes to town for a matchup with the Minnesota Vikings. 

Mash-up! PETA Endorses NFL Washington Redskin Potatoes
The Washington Senators, the Washington Renegades and even the Washington Hogs are some of the suggestions fans are offering to Dan Snyder to replace his beloved Redskins.

The Redskins Issue: An Internal Discussion and Question
Think about it: why hasn’t there been any polling, that originated from Natives, about if the Redskins mascot/name is offensive to you?  Native people are smart enough and capable to make our own decisions without someone determining for us.  NOBODY—whether they are pro-Redskins or anti-Redskins—should be speaking for you and saying what is offensive to you. 
“It is unfortunate and un-American that the station permits the team to slander Native Americans on the public airwaves with the use of the r-word, but doesn't permit Native Americans to use the same airwaves to object to the use of a racial slur,” Oneida Indian Nation Representative Ray Halbritter said in a news release. “We will not be silent mascots. This issue is not going away, as evidenced by the growing and diverse support this effort gains by the day." 

Native Americans Give Other Groups A Taste Of CasualSports Team Racism

How the Redskins Debate Goes Over in Indian Country
“I don’t really worry about it,” said Elaine YellowHorse, a college student and EMT on the reservation, told me. “There are just so many other things that I need to worry about before that.”  But YellowHorse gives the lie to the idea that 58% of the survey respondents actively condone the name. While she said she wouldn’t bother to change it, YellowHorse also told me that she found “Redskins” offensive and was upset by the idea that there were non-Native fans running around in headdresses in the nation’s capital. It’s a difficult sentiment to understand — to find something offensive but not worth worrying about — but when the whole world around you is tinged with racism, you have a high bar for what you deem worthy of worrying about.

June, 2014 Trademark Rescinded!
The heinous origins and history of the D.C. team’s name should tell you why the overwhelming majority of Native American peoples support litigation against the Washington franchise – and why our fight is far from over. Last week, in a historic decision, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board canceled the Washington team’s trademarks, pending appeals. The TTAB held that the six trademark licenses issued to Pro Football, Inc. between 1967 and 1990 were “disparaging” to a “substantial composite” of Native American people. That was the second time the TTAB – the expert judges on trademark law – ruled against the team’s name; the first was in 1999 in Harjo et al v. Pro Football, Inc.

A Listing of Who Has Spoken Out About the Redskins

Racial Slurs Are Not an Honor

A Document that shows how "redskins" represent scalps and dead Native People
The excerpt is from The Daily Republican newspaper in Winona, Minnesota from Sept. 24, 1863.

Cheerleaders do their own blunder  

If You Want To Understand Why Mascots Like ‘Redskins’ Are A Problem, Listen To This 15-Year-Old Native American 

Missing the Point: The Real Impact of Mascots and Team Names...
CLICK LINK FOR VIDEO (1 hours 30 minutes streamed live)The debate over the Washington football team’s racist name and mascot has reached a fevered pitch in recent months. But too much of the debate has missed the point. It is not just about a name, a logo, a business, or a matter of intent. Racist and derogatory team names have a real and harmful impact on American Indian and Alaska Native, or AI/AN, people every day, particularly young people. The Center for American Progress will release a new report examining the research about the harmful impact of these representations on the self-esteem of AI/AN youth, how they create a hostile learning environments in K-12 and postsecondary schools, and the decades-long movement to retire them. It will also propose new recommendations to local, state, and federal education agencies to transform learning environments that are hostile and unwelcoming to AI/AN students and their families into ones that are supportive.

Native American “Black Face” Equivalent

We are supposed to be having a particularly earnest conversation with each other (and ourselves) this autumn about whether the continuing use of the nickname "Redskins" for Washington's professional football team perpetuates stereotypes against Native Americans. Of course it does. If you want to better understand why,  if you want to better appreciate the enormity of the problem, if you want a sense of the challenge American Indians face as they seek to fight back against these hoary symbols, watch this clip from Saturday's "College Gameday" on ESPN.

This unseemly episode is the result of two traditions. The first has to do with Florida State University, which has taken the nickname "Seminoles" from the Native American tribe with a long and unfortunate history in Florida. The university's tradition, since 1978 anyway, is to have a man, dressed up like a tribal "chief" named Osceola (né William Powell), ride out atop a horse named "Renegade" onto Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee before home games and throw a flaming spear into the ground at midfield while the crowd goes wild. Here is the list of "Osceolas" (and "Renegades") over the years.

The second tradition has to do with ESPN and this particular show. Each week, Lee Corso, a nationally known college football commentator, dons the garb of the team he is picking to win the feature game of the weekend. Sometimes, Corso wears a mascot head. Sometimes he dresses up. The college kids eat it up. It's great fun and great for the show's ratings. On Saturday, Corso, an alum of FSU, happened to pick his alma mater to beat Clemson (which FSU did, by a lot), which is why he was dressed up like Osceola. (Update: I don't mean to suggest this is the first time he has done this. Here is how he did it last year).

Redskins vs. Bears Today: What's in a Name?
African-American men, women, and children struggled in the mid-century fight for civil rights here in the United States. It was a long and brutal fight fought with sticks, stones, laws, words, and names like the N-word and all the brutality it still conjures today. Some died so that future generations, this generation included, could be equal and respected. The Two-Spirit community struggled for rights of recognition and is inching away from hateful names and acts, and towards equality and the freedoms found therein. A brighter dawn breaks for them. The political world is crashing in on itself and people are seeing dysfunction. Wanting to be heard, they are raising their voices and calling for change.

Yet for Native people, the harsh reality of deep-seated racism continues to smack us in the face. Dan Snyder and the onerous name of his football team are under scrutiny. The public is questioning whether the term “redskin” is racist or not. The Native community is reminded that we are still at war, a perpetual fight to establish ourselves in this society as people deserving of respect and dignity afforded everyone else.

Every time a racist mascot (usually a white guy in red face dressed in an Indian “costume”) rears its ugly head, Natives are reminded that we are not equal; we are not respected. We will be told if something should offend us. It is arrogance in its purist form for a non-Native to tell a Native whether an image of a dancing, whooping, cartoony Indian is offensive or not. It is arrogance for a non-Native to tell a Native the word “redskin” is a great honor from the Great White Father and we should all be so pleased with their generous mercy and wisdom.

Obama Supports Redskin Name Change

Adidas Offers to Eliminate Mascots at High Schools and ReBrand