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Should Washington Redskins Change Their Name? [POLL]

Photo: Jamie Squire/Getty Images

For as long as I can remember in the world of sports, the controversy of sports teams using Native American names and logos as their official moniker has been a hotbed of discussion. The Washington Redskins professional football team is now in the hot seat over their name, and there is a remote possibility that they may be forced to change anyway.

The photo above is a self-labeled diehard Redskins fan who goes by the name of Chief Zee, who is obviously of African-American descent. The point I wanted to make is that it’s not just the White race who won’t let go of tradition. Tradition is the key word here.

When I worked at Husson University a number of years ago, a group of students approached me and asked what they needed to do to get the team name changed from Braves to something more politically correct. When I brought it up to an administrator, who shall remain nameless, she said there is no way it would happen. She stated that alumni dollars were at risk. Besides she saw nothing wrong with it, and it was honoring to the Penobscot Nation on Indian Island.

The students were at a loss as how to celebrate their beloved team, as a mascot was needed, and they did not want to offend Native Americans with costumes, face paint, tomahawk chops and the like.

Years later Husson University changed the team name to the Eagles. I wish those kids could’ve been there to see it. And as for alumni dollars drying up? Husson University has grown to levels that was almost unimaginable at the time.

As half Native American, I’m a bit biased. I grew up enduring racial taunts and physical confrontations, all for being Native American. Even just a few years ago while at Home Depot in Bangor, an elderly man with his wife and another couple with Canadian plates held up a hand and mouthed the word ‘How’ (a Hollywood creation) as they drove off. For just a moment my blood boiled, but I was reminded that we still have a ways to go culturally.

High schools are slowly jumping on board the name change bandwagon. Kudos to them.

So, what say you? Should the Redskins change their name?

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