Bruce Allen declares victory in Twitter debacle

Getty Images

The Washington NFL franchise launched last week via Twitter an effort to shout down Senator Harry Reid and anyone else actively opposing the team’s name.  It didn’t go well.

That hasn’t stopped the Washington NFL franchise from declaring victory.

“The social media is the way people get information now, and our fans have spoken very loudly in support of what we’ve been doing,” team president and G.M. Bruce Allen told Jason Reid of the Washington Post.  “We got a very good response from our fans.

“Thousands of our fans responded, including hundreds of Native Americans, saying we are their favorite team. I do think that’s the message we’ve been hearing.”

If that’s the only message they’ve been hearing, it means they’re only listening to what they want to hear.  Opposition to the name exists, and it seems to be growing, and galvanizing.  While it’s possible to cherry pick through last week’s hashtag misadventure to find messages supporting the team’s position on its name, it would have been impossible to not notice the countless responses that chided the team for its stubborn insistence that a name coined 80 years ago hasn’t fallen victim to changing times and modified attitudes regarding acceptable language use.

The team’s decision to engage the opposition and to warp reality regarding the issue won’t make the controversy go away.  It will remain until the name changes, and when the name changes it’s safe to say that the team will find a way to claim that, in the end, the team somehow won the fight.

88 responses to “Bruce Allen declares victory in Twitter debacle

  1. Bruce Allen suffers from Roger Goodell disease. Cherry picks responses and then puts forth the argument that because one fan said something, that’s what all fans want.

  2. Thank you for ceasing your use of the Washington NFL Franchise’s name. They need to get with the 21st century

  3. Shout out to the Red Mesa High Redskins in Arizona who apparently do not have a problem with the Redskins as their mascot name. Their school Superintendant is a 100% Navajo Indian.
    Do you mean to tell me that actual American Indians living on a reservation are proud to be called “Redskins.”

  4. “If that’s the only message they’ve been hearing, it means they’re only listening to what they want to hear. ”

    They’re listening to the people who buy their tickets and merchandise.

  5. Bruce Allen is an idiot if he thinks that debate re the name Redskins, is over because of a win on twitter.
    It is considered a slur to many native Americans and the debate will disappear when Dan Snyder changes the name.

  6. There are only 2 ways that the Redskins name gets changed, 1. Sponsors begin to drop out and 2. Players start to refuse to play there until there is a name change. Like anything in sports and life it all starts with money. Once the league and team start losing it nothing will change.

  7. And yet, even after the twitter incident, the name is still not changing.

    The bottom line is this: all the trolls and fans of other teams that wrote in trashing the Redskins on twitter and generally not spending money on the Redskins tickets or merchandise. Therefore, their opinion will not make Dan Snyder change his mind.

    This is the bottom line. Trolls and twitter trouble makers create a lot of noise but in this case they actually have very little power.

  8. Bruce Allen needs to quit riding with Will Hill, if he thinks the Twitter effort went well he’s higher than Snoop and Josh Gordon on 4/20!

  9. Strange, because the vast majority of those commenting here seem to support Allen’s view. If I were a Native American, I’d be far more insulted by the media’s and politicians’ bastardization of my own perspective in order to forward their agenda.

  10. Bruce Allen probably doesn’t have any original opinions, he speaks for and believes in what Snyder wants of him. He’s basically just an avatar. Snyder should update his profile at some point and go for a different look. Or just reprogram Bruce Allen to be a football guru instead of a lousy politician.

  11. I didn’t know people could grow to become offended by something. Where was this outrage 10-15-20 years ago?

    Oh, the country is making progress, so we’ve got to find something else to cry about.

    The “I’m Offended Police” make it harder for real discrimination to be addressed. People are too busy laughing at “movements” like this one.

  12. Maybe a school in Arizona uses and honors the name but if Washington’s name offends just one Native American, it should be changed.

  13. The name was around for 80 or so years. I am not making any argument for or against the name. The name is out of touch with current thinking. But why are these politicians just now realizing that? It has been 80 years..the civil rights movement…the great leaps we made in getting along with each other better..and now in the second decade of the 21st century the boys in the Senate just realized this might offend people?
    Our “leadership”…..Geez….we are doomed as a nation…

  14. This argument that the name should not be changed because it has been around for 80 years is completely ludicrous. Racism has been around since the beginning of time and it has only been the last 50 or so years when there has been popular support to eradicate it. Gay hatred has existed since the formation of our country and we have only begun to push for equal rights in the past few decades. Just because something has been around for a long time does not make it right. The name is, by any definition, hateful and prejudicial. It needs to be changed. For all of you that still support it, you are on the wrong side of history.

  15. I’d like to see all the people who think the term “Redskin” is totally acceptable put on a bus to the Pine Ridge Reservation and encouraged to use the term freely. See how that goes…

  16. The team has been named the “Redskins” since 1932 and everything has been fine. There hasn’t been a peep about the name being insensitive for over 82 years now. All of a sudden, it’s unacceptable.

    What’s the deal?

    I am proud of the Redskins organization and anyone else in our modern society that is willing to stand up to nonsensical political correctness. Keyword being “nonsensical”.

  17. “The team’s decision to engage the opposition and to warp reality regarding the issue won’t make the controversy go away”

    -said by those living in glass houses.

  18. The Red Mesa High Redskins have said previously that use of the word outside American Indian communities should be avoided because it could perpetuate “the legacy of negativity that the term has created.” so they are not for the Redskins being used by Washington either…

  19. The twitter fiasco changes nothing the name isn’t going to change. Repeat after say REDSKINS and say it proudly.

  20. Serious question here, how have merchandise sales gone for them in the last 5-8 months when this topic has really come up? I ask because if fans are buying it more because of fear the name could change, then they are making more money. As long as more money is made they aren’t going to do anything by it.

    Have to wonder if everyone left this topic alone for a while and instead of bringing it up just boycotted talking about the Redskins or buying merchandise completely, they would then change the name.

  21. Yes… “Redskins” is unacceptable and offensive now. That’s how these things go as opinions change over time. The N word didn’t originate as a word meant to hurt others either… but that’s what it quickly became.

  22. Let me ask this question are the people who want a name change willing to pay for the cost it will take to change the name and make all the new merchandise? If you all are willing to do that maybe Dan will consider changing the name.

  23. What is the big deal?!?? Just change the name to the Washington Americans and keep the same logo??!! Geeze!!! White, Black, Spanish? It doesn’t matter!!! What Race you are,!?!??? “Redskins” is offensive!!! To think that it is not???!! One would have to be a complete moron!!!!!!!

  24. Everyone nowadays is soft and sweet. They fight name changes but wont fight for the real issues that plague this country!

  25. I personally get angry when people try to depict me as a mighty and brave warrior. Wouldn’t you?

  26. For all the people who say that this term is used out of respect or honor–would you walk up to a Native American and say, “Hello, Redskin.” Do you think that would be respectful?

  27. It’s laughable to think that it would be “expensive” to change the name. All the new merchandise that would have to be produced…seriously? Pretty sure the sales of the merchandise would pay for that, just like when there’s a logo change or a change in jersey manufacturers.

  28. I would love to walk up to a native american, but sadly, where are they? They are being removed for the human lexicon. Diminished. Forgotten.
    The Washington Redskins are one of very few iconic Native American motifs left that depict Native Americans in a memorable light.
    Last thing – how many Native Americans use twitter?

  29. Based on the comments one would think the readers are for changing the name. Then you see the thumbs up vs thumbs down on those comments and realize where everyone really stands.

  30. Companies who believe that the Redskins is an offensive name should stop doing business with the NFL, which 1/32 belongs to the Washington Redskins.
    I doubt that would happen because money talks even though these associates are against the Redskins morally but not financially.

  31. The Liberal machine churns on. In the 90’s it was “focus on women”! Through the 2000’s it’s been “focus on the poor oppressed gay people!”. Now they want everyone to focus on the name of a football team. Meanwhile, the economy sucks, all of our jobs are overseas and drugs are worse than ever. How about we focus on the real issues??

  32. Announcing a twitter victory ?? Yup that’s loser talk. Little Danny’s puppet has spoken, haha.

  33. The problem is, as I see it, the minority that is growing has been led by ignorance. I do not think we solve a problem like this by giving in to that ignorance. The best way to fight ignorance is by disseminating the truth. Racism will not be solved by empowering the ignorant, but by educating the masses.

    Many say that this is a fight against racism, and I agree. However, I believe the supporters of the name are not the racists. We look at the term with pride and respect. I am not implying that the opponents of the name are racist, either. Those who want us to change it are those that look at it with ignorance and/or derision, or simply feel that sweeping the problem under the rug solves the problem. This term originated with Native Americans and we believe we are honoring them, and an awful lot of them agree. I want to let them claim this word again with the pride and honor that they felt when they first used the term.

    I was a fan of the Bullets when they wanted to change their name. Even though I thought the reasoning was a stretch, I understood the thought behind it and was ok with it. I am not standing firm on this one out of stubbornness or team loyalty. I stand firm because I believe the words I am writing.

  34. People saying, “there are bigger issues in America” are delusional. Of course there are bigger issues like rape, murder and other crime but just because something is less severe, doesn’t mean it’s not an issue.

    Wake up people!

  35. The team name should be changed, Bruce should be fired, Danny Snyder should be forced to sell the team…the NFL would be much better off if these three things were to happen…

  36. Has it ever occurred to them to put someone who knows PR in charge of this, rather than a contract specialist GM?

  37. When will we be able to draw the line between antiquated and offensive? Anytime a word falls out of common use it is then immediately considered offensive. Why? It’s an interesting social and linguistic question.

    I think it’s quite apparent that teams are not named after something the owners want to mock or make fun of. So it’s difficult for me to believe that anyone associated with the organization at any point intended offense with regard to the team name.

    Obviously, I’m not in a position to say what is or is not offensive to anyone else, but I would like to hear an intellegent dicussion on the difference between antiquated and offensive before I would move my opinion to the side of the team changing its name.

  38. how about reporters find something else to write an article about bcuz this is more annoying than anything. how about when both sides finally agree on a compromise(which we all know won’t happen) then write about

  39. the reason it seems like the “PC police” come up with a new issue every decade or so is actually quite simple:
    as more groups of people fight for the respect they deserve, other groups are empowered to come forward and do the same. so yes, at one point women were a focal point, and at other points the african americans hispanic, LGBQT, and native american communities have come forward with grievances. this doesn’t mean people are making up new issues to be offended about. it means that our society is evolving and giving a voice to people who didn’t used to have a voice.

  40. Ok- next step then. We will have to change the name of the state of Oklahoma. It’s Choctaw for red people. But……Named by a white man. It is therefore an offensive term. We need to begin the twitter campaign. The Oklahoma City thunder are also now an offensive team name. What about the Cleveland Indians mascot? Talk about a caricature that is not flattering. And pretty red. Don’t stop with Washington- take it all the way!!!! Or- stop fanning the flames. Before the white man media got this really going – I thought the redskins had a cool symbol of a wise warrior chief and was not disrespectful at all. So much for what one only slightly pigmented person thinks.

  41. Do the “change the name” posters realize that most of the reservations on which Native Americans live often have no electricity, telephones, or internet connectivity? So, its doubtful they are up to date on this battle taking place on their behalf. But, by all means, lets help them by changing the name! I’m sure that the Redskins renaming the team will allow the drug abuse, healthcare, teenage pregnancy, unemployment, and all the other real issues to go away!

    This Political Correctness is causing us to lose focus!

  42. No, to think the name is not offensive one would have to be knowledgeable about what the term means. To be offended, one would have to ignore what it means or have a desire to empower racists to control our language.

  43. Too bad the Redskins can’t just declare victory on the field so they’d have a chance of playing meaningful games after November 1st. Loser organization.

  44. “Redskins” is no longer a derogatory term. If it once was, so what. It isn’t any longer so it can’t possibly hurt anyone today. Nobody uses it to hurt others.

  45. Old Harry has not found a joint he will not jump for some free PR. Facts are that it is a very small minority of these soft, wienie my way or the highway types making the noise. I cannot stand the Redskins Team but hope they never change the name. Out here in the land of the Shoshone, they love the name.

  46. For those of you who are bloodthirsty to gut the Redskins organization, and don’t fool youself that is exactly what forcing a name change would do, please try to honestly think how you would feel if your team suddenly had to change their name for one reason or another.
    I think it’s funny the some of you have inside knowledge and know for a fact that the organization actually received a lot of negative comments back on their survey. Did you have access to the results?

  47. Well, I know they have my support. Anything DeMaurice Smith, Harry Reid and this article’s author supports, I know is blatantly wrong.

    Hail Redskins! Cash my check and keep the name. A lot of us enjoy the fact that it pisses off Harry, Mike and DeMaurice

  48. where was all this outrage 10 years ago? 5 years ago? 2 years ago?

    the only reason this is a hot topic these days is because of the upcoming mid-term elections, and these senators are trying to keep their cushy jobs and it a disgrace. they are looking for a reason to divide us and to deflect our attention from them not doing what they should be doing.

    ive never thought about the word redskins as being a slur, just the name of a football team. the way we all did until these rabble wranglers feared for their jobs.

  49. This is a super-important issue and it demands attention at the highest levels of our nation.

  50. They are calling THEMSELVES the Redskins. Not anyone else. They are taking pride in calling themselves the Redskins.

    It can’t be racist.

    And since nobody has RED skin, how can you be offended? It’s hilarious because the people getting most upset over the name is white people with nothing better to do than start a debate over such inconsequential things.

  51. We, who support the name, argue that it doesn’t refer to the color of their skin, and is not a “nickname” for Native Americans, so why would I call them “Redskin”. We stick to the original meaning. We do not adhere to the one that you do, which is used improperly by racists and those ignorant of the meaning. You might as well ask if I would call them “suit of armor” or “vest”.

  52. Once freedom of speech is gone people, its gone forever. You don’t like “this” word, they don’t like “that” word. You argue over the least of problems, while the major ones are hidden by the powers. Catastrophic debt, devalued national credit rating, devalued currency, national bankruptcy. When they begin to explode in your face, you won’t have any sports teams with names you don’t like.

  53. Ok PC Police, change the name. As a matter of fact, change every Native American name/mascot as well. Watch as they fall back into obscurity.

    #HTTR
    #TheGovernmentNeedsToDoTheirJobs

  54. Politically correct speech is an awesome distraction. Lets ignore all problems in the nation because an owner says something, or a team name. I wish people spent as much time on geoengineering, genetically modified foods & other real problems as they do on crying over a team name that’s been fine for 78 of the pas 80 years

  55. As a side note, you say concern is growing… This is the only site I see continually talking about this. Or talking about it at all for that matter. So I don’t see the growing distain for the team name Redskins.

  56. Pretty sure whoever the social media guru who dreamed up this campaign they’re claiming “victory” for gets pink slipped by Snyder…

  57. Dan Snyder has proven himself to be the NFL’s worst owner, wrecking a once-proud franchise to become the NFL’s 3-13 bottom-feeder and having to eliminate 14,000 seats to avert the ignominy of TV blackouts for the Landover franchise’s disillusioned, once-proud fans. Nonetheless, Snyder should be commended for having the “cajones” to stand up the the PC crowd trying to tell him what to do with his personal property.

    Not that it matters: after seeing how swiftly the NBA stripped the LA Clippers owners of his right to participate in their association over a relatively innocuous comment, it’s just a matter of time before Goodell and the other 31 wimps will force Snyder to fold.

  58. Jun 3, 2014, 12:31 PM EDT
    The Liberal machine churns on. In the 90′s it was “focus on women”! Through the 2000′s it’s been “focus on the poor oppressed gay people!”. Now they want everyone to focus on the name of a football team. Meanwhile, the economy sucks, all of our jobs are overseas and drugs are worse than ever. How about we focus on the real issues?? WOW,,,,LOL THERE ARE PEOPLE IN 2014 that still think and BELIVE in this manner?!??!!!! lol SCARY!!!!

  59. Red in Redskins is in re: to Red War Paint and NOT Skin Color. The word Oklahoma literally translates into “Red People” but no one is complaining, image that. A Native American coined the team team and a Native American pushed for Native American imagery on the helmets NOT a white man. Also, the 1st head coach of the Redskins was a Native American and 4 original Redskins player were Native American… Imagine That?

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!