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Time to rethink native American imagery?

Discussion in 'Sports Forum' started by Alcott, Sep 26, 2012.

  1. Alcott

    Alcott Well-Known Member

    Dec 17, 2002


    This article, as you would expect, tries to make a case for canceling ‘native American’ names and imagery for sports teams, as some schools have already done. The writer does touch on the expected counterpoints, such as “What about Vikings or Fighting Irish?” and responds that those names refer “to themselves.” Well, obviously not completely, if much at all. But he extends this request to pro teams, as well as college and high school. 2 in particular which are supposedly offensive are the name Redskins and the big-smiling Chief Wahoo of the Cleveland Indians. However, one justification for the use of such imagery he does persuade in favor of, which is if licensing fees are involved, noting that Florida State has always had an agreement with the Seminoles to use their name and image.

    So what do we think of this? Are team names like Indians, Fighting Sioux, Chippewas, et al, derogatory to native Americans? Or just names which refer to their physical characteristics or warlike image [Braves, Redskins, (Hawaii) Rainbow Warriors]? And then caricatures, like Chief Wahoo, or rallying war cries and the “tomahawk chop?” And is this any different from names and imagery such as the USC Trojan and his sword, Notre Dame and its green-clad little Irishman putting up his dukes, Spartans, Vikings, Rebels,… finally names like Jayhawks (terrorists?) Texans (anti-Mexican?), and those that can be either insult or compliment—Cowboys, Aggies, Raiders, Pirates…?

    And licensing fees for their use? To whom, or what? Maybe a tribe can be paid off, but Indians in general, or Irish? And where might it all lead? Animal rights groups trying to forbid Cowboys, Whalers, Archers...?

    If there is one facet of this I may have taken seriously in the past, it is some religious/church groups which have wanted to do away with those that use Devils or Demons as part of the name. Perhaps with that, some of us might begin to understand some of the sensitivities.
  2. mont974x4

    mont974x4 New Member

    Jan 6, 2012
    I try to not take sports that seriously.

    I also believe that our Indian heritage is great and find the names, traditions, and war cries are an honor. I know some don't agree but that is still allowed in this country...for now.
  3. Arbo

    Arbo Active Member

    Dec 4, 2010
    People need to grow thicker skin. To have a sports team named after your ethnic group is not an insult, it's an honor. And this is comming fom a Swede.
  4. ktn4eg

    ktn4eg New Member

    Nov 19, 2004
    Wow, that'd mean that my HS alma mater would have to change its name to the "Native-Americans" I guess!! :tonofbricks:

    At least my grad school's Austin Peay St Univ (Clarksville TN) "fight cheer" is still intact: "Let's Go Peay!!!" :thumbs:

    You know, I think I will, as a matter of fact!!! :laugh: