Advertisement

What Do You Think?

September 19, 2009

Editor's note: The Herald-Mail invites readers to answer poll questions on its Web site, www.herald-mail.com. Readers also may submit comments when voting. A sampling of edited reader comments will run on The Herald-Mail's Opinion page on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.

The question posted Wednesday on The Herald-Mail's Web site was: Do you think the name "Redskins" for Washington's National Football League team is disrespectful to Native Americans?

"It's disrepectful because of how poorly they play and represent Native Americans! But in reality, it'll be interesting once the courts start backing Native American protests because it'll set the tone for similar organizations all across the country to finally be forced to give up their 'offensive' nicknames, from the Berkeley Springs Indians to Atlanta Braves. But where will the line be drawn? The Fighting Irish is a negative stereotype, or conversely, the Seminoles who are proud to have their name associated with a sports team? What happens when someone thinks the (Pittsburgh) Pirates are offensive because of real-world problems associated with pirates?"

Advertisement

"This is just ridiculous. Mascots are icons that are revered, respected or feared. The Redskins team name honors American Indians. The Notre Dame Fighting Irish uses a stereotypical depiction of a scrappy Irishman. This fighting icon could be interpreted in a derogatory light. Like all mascots, it is not. It is respected. Sports teams from grade school to the pros are proud to be called Warriors, Indians, Mountaineers and other figures who represent strength, determination and fearlessness. Our society is sensitive to the point of paralysis."

"No, they should be proud. The name Redskins was picked to instill fear in the other teams and hopefully to live up to the proud warrior traditions of the Indians."

"If there was significant protest about the name amongst American Indians, I would favor looking at the issue. Otherwise, it is not controversial. A separate point is that it matters who is using the term that is in question. A group can use a word to describe themselves that is OK when they use it, but not when an outsider uses the very same term."

"As a real Native American, most of us have grown thick skin. If this issue needs to be dissected then it all points to the use of 'skin.' Call someone a Brave or Seminole, there's more room for flexibility. When these issues were brought up in the '80s, they were squashed. Perhaps it hits a nerve with individuals now because Native Americans have been pushed to the back burner and almost considered lost throughout the years."

"Why do people let words bother them? Some Indians may take it as offensive and others may not. Just as some still don't like being called Indians, but have talked to others in the past and, believe it or not, most I have talked to could care less about what they are called and care more about the actual treatment/prior treatment they receive from others."

The Herald-Mail Articles
|
|
|