The PC Police have struck again and Washington Redskins President Bruce Allen recently weighed in on the contrived controversy. Friday Allen released a public statement in response to a letter signed by 49 senators-all Democrats – in which the politicians urged the NFL (National Football League) to strong-arm the Redskins to change its name.
A few days ago Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and company wrote: “The N.F.L. can no longer ignore this and perpetuate the use of this name as anything but what it is: a racial slur. We urge the N.F.L. to formally support a name change for the Washington football team.”
The letter specifically referenced the sanctions the NBA (National Basketball Association) took against the Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling who was unknowingly recorded using racially offensive comments. (The letter did not refer to the related lawsuit and any potential future cost passed on to the fans nor did it include any significant statements from Native American tribes.)
In his response to the letter Allen stated that the football team is “a positive, unifying force for our community in a city and region that is divided on so many levels.” He invited the politicians to a home game to experience the positive energy personally. He further noted the team’s history stating that the Redskins are one of the league’s “flagship franchises” having garnered five championship victories and 11 championship game appearances.
Additionally Allen included mention of the Redskins’ 81-year history, the thousands of alumni as well as millions of fans. He also cited a study conducted by the Annenberg Public Policy Center that surveyed almost 1,000 Native Americans. The results revealed that 90% didn’t consider the name Redskins to be offensive.
Allen reported: “The Redskins team name continues to carry a deep and purposeful meaning. A “senior linguist” spent over half a year delving into the name “Redskins” and learned that it was actually “coined by Native Americans as a term of solidarity.”
In his own written statement team owner Daniel Snyder stood strong on the name Redskins: “As a team, we have honored them through our words and on the field, but now we will honor them through our actions. We commit to the tribes that we stand together with you, to help you build a brighter future for your communities.”
He concluded: “We understand the issues out there, and we’re not an issue. The real issues are real-life issues, real-life needs, and I think it’s time that people focus on reality.” There was no response from the senators as to what actions they are taking to rectify the country’s “real-life issues” and “real-life needs.”