NFL

NFL to meet with Oneida Nation over Redskins name

{eot}
The Canadian Press
10/7/2013 8:01:04 PM
Decrease Text SizeIncrease Text Size
Text Size

WASHINGTON -- The NFL is prepared to meet with an Indian tribe pushing for the Washington Redskins to drop the team's nickname. Just not this week.

As league owners gathered Monday in the nation's capital for their fall meetings, the Oneida Indian Nation held a symposium across town to promote their "Change the Mascot" campaign. Oneida representative Ray Halbritter said the NFL was invited to attend.

Instead, NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said, a meeting has been scheduled for next month -- and could happen sooner.

"We respect that people have differing views," McCarthy said. "It is important that we listen to all perspectives."

He said the Redskins name is not on the agenda for the owners' meetings. Redskins owner Dan Snyder has vowed to keep the name, and an AP-GfK poll conducted in April found that nearly 4 in 5 Americans don't think the team should change its name.

It's a topic generating discussion lately, though. President Barack Obama said in an interview with The Associated Press last week that he would "think about changing" the team's name if he were the owner.

Halbritter called that statement "nothing less than historic" and said the team's nickname is "a divisive epithet ... and an outdated sign of division and hate."

Addressing the NFL, Halbritter said: "It is hypocritical to say you're America's pastime but not represent the ideals of America."

U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum, D-Minn., said the league and team are "promoting a racial slur" and "this issue is not going away."

For years, a group of American Indians has tried to block the team from having federal trademark protection, and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton, the District of Columbia's envoy to Congress, predicted Monday that effort eventually will succeed.

"This name is going to go into the dustbin of history," she said.

Lanny Davis, a lawyer who said he's been advising Snyder on the name issue for "at least several months," said in a telephone interview after the symposium: "The Washington Redskins support people's feelings, but the overwhelming data is that Native Americans are not offended and only a small minority are."

Davis also said the campaign is "showing selective attention" by focusing on the Redskins and not teams such as the NFL's Kansas City Chiefs, NHL's Chicago Blackhawks, or Major League Baseball's Cleveland Indians and Atlanta Braves.

Earlier, Halbritter was asked about those other nicknames.

"The name of Washington's team is a dictionary-defined, offensive racial epithet. Those other names aren't," Halbritter said. "But there is a broader discussion to be had about using mascots generally."

Players for the Redskins have remained mostly silent on the topic, including star quarterback Robert Griffin III, who recently called the debate "something way above my understanding."

Some players approached in the locker room Monday avoided addressing the subject altogether.

"It's really tough. And I mean this sincerely: I get both sides of the argument," guard Chris Chester said. "I see how it can offend some people, but I feel like the context that this organization has, there's no negative connotation. You wouldn't name your team something you didn't have respect for. At least I wouldn't. I mean, I understand, too, that it offends some people, so I sympathize with both sides."

Redskins name change (Photo: The Canadian Press)

zoom

(Photo: The Canadian Press)
Share This

Share This

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to FarkAdd to TwitterAdd to Stumble UponAdd to Reddit
Print this Story


Podcasts

TSN 1050: The Bryan Hayes Show: Septemeber 2nd - Alex Marvez

Alex Marvez of Fox Sports 1 joins the show to discuss Jim Irsay, Michael Sam, and J.J Watt.

TSN 1050: Game Night: September 1 - Matt Florjancic

WKYC Cleveland's Matt Florjancic joins Andy McNamara and John Letherby on Game Night.

TSN 1050: Game Night: Joe Horrigan - July 30

Pro Football Hall of Fame VP of Communications Joe Horrigan joined Game Night with Jim Tatti & Andy McNamara to talk NFL Hall of Fame Weekend


More Podcasts

NFL on TSN and CTV

Sunday, September 14

New England Patriots at Minnesota Vikings - 1pm et/10am pt (CTV Vancouver, CTV Alberta, CTV Saskatchewan, CTV Winnipeg, CTV Ottawa, CTV Northern Ontario, CTV Montreal, CTV Atlantic)


Miami Dolphins at Buffalo Bills - 1pm et/10am pt (CTV Toronto, CTV Kitchener)


Seattle Seahawks at San Diego Chargers - 4:05pm et/1:05pm pt (TSN1, TSN3, TSN4, TSN5)


Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos - 4:25pm et/1:25pm pt (CTV Vancouver, CTV Alberta, CITL)


New York Jets at Green Bay Packers - 4:25pm et/1:25pm pt (CTV Toronto, CTV Kitchener, CTV Ottawa, CTV Northern Ontario, CTV Montreal, CTV Winnipeg, CTV Saskatchewan, CTV Two Atlantic, CKPR)


Chicago Bears at San Francisco 49ers - 8:15pm et/5:15pm pt (TSN1, TSN3, TSN4, TSN5)


Monday, September 15

Philadelphia Eagles at Indianapolis Colts - 7pm et/4pm pt (TSN1, TSN3, TSN4, TSN5)


NFL on TSN Broadcast Schedule

© 2014
All rights reserved.
Bell Media Television