Time for the Redskins to change their name? [POLL]
The chorus is getting louder and louder for the long-time NFL Washington Redskins to change their traditional name and logo to something else.
Many are demanding that the team change it to something less offensive and racially demeaning.
And now the U.S. patent office has jumped into the fray canceling the Redskins trademark registration, says name is disparaging.
Question here is this: should political correctness trump tradition; or should the government have the power to change your name just for the sake of political correctness?
Because if I were the owner of the Redskins – I’d have to hear the drumbeat of those screaming for the ‘Skins to be called something else. And now the famous Redskins trademarks have been canceled by U.S. Patent Office.
From the other side advocating for keeping the name in place, one pundit claims in Politifact that the name goes back to colonial times when the name was used to differentiate the natives from the colonists, and that it was actually a ‘term of respect’.
But just like many things change over time in society (note the use of the n-word among African Americans – thought to be a term of endearment – while still being off limits to others), so too it is with the “Redskins” designation.
In other words, the meaning has changed over time, if indeed it has changed at all.
You can spout “tradition” all you want. Fact is, traditions change. Many things thought to be “traditional” through the years have, in fact, evolved.
“Traditional marriage” for one.
Here’s another angle.
Why is it that when other teams have through name changes, it’s done without so much fanfare?
The Tampa Devil Rays became the Rays (probably to not offend whatever base of religionists they may have.)
The Washington Bullets became the Washington Wizards (again, probably to remove the stigma of DC being a dangerous place.)
Political correctness has much to do with this – but given today’s reality, isn’t it silly to hang onto a name, albeit perceived as racist, just for the sake of tradition?
Perhaps so, but then again, don’t you find it heinous that the government puts itself in the position of forcing you to change your name at the expense of losing your trademark rights.
Who will the government target next: Notre Dame for having as its logo the leprechaun and the name “Fighting Irish”. Or Godfather’s Pizza because of its derogatory reference to Italian Americans as mobsters.
And as an editorial in the Star Ledger points out, other teams with Native American mascots may be forced to do the same, such as the Braves, Indians, and Chiefs.
A slippery slope to be sure.
I guess while we’re at it, you can probably forget about “throwback jersey” days as well!
Do you feel the Washington Redskins should change their name to something else?