Redskins: The-Team-That-Must-Not-Be-Named starts their season

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Redskins: The-Team-That-Must-Not-Be-Named starts their season

[cap­tion id=“attachment_54680” align=“alignright” width=“206”]John "Lee" Ruberry of Da Magnificent Seven John “Lee” Ruberry of Da
Mag­nif­i­cent Seven[/caption]

By John Ruberry

Your sports team is vastly infe­rior
That sim­ple fact is plainly obvi­ous to see
We’re gonna kick your col­lec­tive pos­te­rior
Of course you real­ize we’re speak­ing fig­u­ra­tively.“
Weird Al Yankovic, Sports Song.

The generic send-​up of fight anthems, Sports Song, on Weird Al Yankovic’s lat­est album is quite timely today. This after­noon the Hous­ton Tex­ans will host the Wash­ing­ton Red­skins as the National Foot­ball League reg­u­lar sea­son begins in full.

There’s that nick­name – Red­skins. Many self-​righteous lib­er­als, includ­ing Pres­i­dent Obama and most of the Demo­c­ra­tic US Sen­ate cau­cus, are demand­ing that the Wash­ing­ton fran­chise change its name to some­thing they deem less offensive.

Team owner Dan Sny­der is firmly com­mit­ted to keep­ing the Red­skins name and an over­whelm­ing major­ity of Amer­i­cans agree with him.

The only notable con­ser­v­a­tive, as far as I know, who favors a name change is Washington-​based Charles Krautham­mer.

Daily news­pa­pers have entered the fray. Yes­ter­day the Char­lotte Observer told its read­ers that with the excep­tion of sto­ries about the team name con­tro­versy, it won’t use Red­skins in sto­ries about the DC grid­iron team. Charlotte’s foot­ball entry, the Car­olina Pan­thers, won’t meet the ‘Skins this sea­son unless it’s in the playoffs.

Among the tele­vi­sion sports per­son­al­i­ties who vow to avoid the Wash­ing­ton team moniker are Phil Simms and Tony Dungy.

The Detroit News and the Seat­tle Times swore off use of the Red­skins name this sum­mer. Seattle’s foot­ball team, the defend­ing Super Bowl cham­pion Sea­hawks, hosts the ‘Skins for a Mon­day night game on Octo­ber 6. I’ll have to take a look at the Times as their reporters strug­gle with avoid­ing the Red­skins name. “Your sports team is vastly infe­rior,” could be a Seat­tle Times taunt for the Red­skins next month. Or the paper could chan­nel the Harry Pot­ter books and refer to the ‘Skins as The-​Team-​That-​Must-​Not-​Be-​Named.

The Wash­ing­ton Post is tak­ing an Obama-​style tepid stand. It won’t use the nick­name on its edi­to­r­ial page.

Where do I stand? While I admit that Red­skins is a slur against Native Amer­i­cans, the use of the team name is over 80 years old. The nick­name is older than the Wash­ing­ton Red­skins them­selves–the Boston Red­skins took their first snap in 1933 before mov­ing to the Dis­trict of Colum­bia four years later. So when vir­tu­ally any­one hears “Red­skins,” they know the word refers to the foot­ball team, not to indige­nous Americans.

Go Red­skins! I wish you great suc­cess – unless you’re play­ing my Chicago Bears, who I hope “kick your col­lec­tive posterior.”

John Ruberry reg­u­larly blogs at Marathon Pun­dit.

John "Lee" Ruberry of Da Magnificent Seven
John “Lee” Ruberry of Da
Magnificent Seven

By John Ruberry

“Your sports team is vastly inferior
That simple fact is plainly obvious to see
We’re gonna kick your collective posterior
Of course you realize we’re speaking figuratively.”
Weird Al Yankovic, Sports Song.

The generic send-up of fight anthems, Sports Song, on Weird Al Yankovic’s latest album is quite timely today. This afternoon the Houston Texans will host the Washington Redskins as the National Football League regular season begins in full.

There’s that nickname–Redskins. Many self-righteous liberals, including President Obama and most of the Democratic US Senate caucus, are demanding that the Washington franchise change its name to something they deem less offensive.

Team owner Dan Snyder is firmly committed to keeping the Redskins name and an overwhelming majority of Americans agree with him.

The only notable conservative, as far as I know, who favors a name change is Washington-based  Charles Krauthammer.

Daily newspapers have entered the fray. Yesterday the Charlotte Observer told its readers that with the exception of stories about the team name controversy, it won’t use Redskins in stories about the DC gridiron team. Charlotte’s football entry, the Carolina Panthers, won’t meet the ‘Skins this season unless it’s in the playoffs.

Among the television sports personalities who vow to avoid the Washington team moniker are Phil Simms and Tony Dungy.

The Detroit News and the Seattle Times swore off use of the Redskins name this summer. Seattle’s football team, the defending Super Bowl champion Seahawks, hosts the ‘Skins for a Monday night game on October 6. I’ll have to take a look at the Times as their reporters struggle with avoiding the Redskins name. “Your sports team is vastly inferior,” could be a Seattle Times taunt for the Redskins next month. Or the paper could channel the Harry Potter books and refer to the ‘Skins as The-Team-That-Must-Not-Be-Named.

The Washington Post is taking an Obama-style tepid stand. It won’t use the nickname on its editorial page.

Where do I stand? While I admit that Redskins is a slur against Native Americans, the use of the team name is over 80 years old. The nickname is older than the Washington Redskins themselves–the Boston Redskins took their first snap in 1933 before moving to the District of Columbia four years later. So when virtually anyone hears “Redskins,” they know the word refers to the football team, not to indigenous Americans.

Go Redskins! I wish you great success–unless you’re playing my Chicago Bears, who I hope “kick your collective posterior.”

John Ruberry regularly blogs at Marathon Pundit.