Redskins Name Is Racist; NFL Should Follow NBA’s Lead Says Sen. Harry ReidBy: Val Powell - May 1, 2014
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada called on the National Football League to change the name of the Washington Redskins as a response to long-standing charges that the name is racially offensive. This move is linked to the example set by the National Basketball Association in penalizing the team owner of the Los Angeles Clippers.
Reid, a Democrat, stated that Redskins owner Daniel Snyder is using tradition as an excuse to retain his team’s name during a Senate speech on Wednesday. Reid has criticized the Redskins’ name in the past, and urged Snyder to “do what is morally right” by changing it immediately. In March, Reid told The Washington Post that he believes the team’s name will be changed within a three-year period.
Snyder has not showed any signs of heeding the senator’s advice since he declared to USA TODAY last year that he would “never” change his team’s name – not even if he loses a federal trademark case in court. Moreover, Snyder does not share the senator’s sentiments regarding the offensive nature of his team’s name. Prominent Native American organizations have also expressed their outrage over Snyder’s refusal to acknowledge the racial connotation of the name.
Reid praised the NBA’s move to impose a lifetime ban and a $2.5 million fine on Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling, after he made racist remarks that caused a fury of firestorm since becoming public several days ago. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, who issued the penalty, received immense support from other NBA team owners, players, and other individuals connected to the league.
In his speech, the Nevada senator went on to add that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell ought to do something to eliminate this “hateful term” from the league’s vocabulary in order to rid it of “racism and bigotry”.
NFL team owners have yet to react to Snyder’s stance on the Redskins name.
Image via Redskins, Twitter