Racist Mascots - Why Do They Still Exist?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Today I experienced a moment of extreme discomfort.  I was listening to the radio, as I do while I work, and the guy doing the sports news said, in reference to Thursday's football game between Washington and Dallas, "The Redskins will be coming over for Thanksgiving."

I don't think the gentleman meant to conjure images of smallpox-infested blankets and genocide, but there it was.  Isn't it time we got the offensive name of this franchise changed?

Political correctness can sometimes go overboard.  Another D.C.-based sports team bowed to pressure to change their name from the Bullets to the Wizards some time back, and the move struck me as silly.  Kids won't know that bullets exist now that we've changed the name? 

But you know what?  The name change didn't hurt anybody.  With the Redskins, we're dealing with institutional racism.  There's no upside to retaining a constant reminder of the terrible way settlers treated the natives when they arrived on this continent, and there's no downside to erasing this embarassment.  Sometimes being politically correct is just plain correct, and this is one of those cases.


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