“Change the Mascot” campaign calls poll results “hardly surprising”

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As Dan Snyder completes a victory lap or two regarding a Washington Post poll that finds 90 percent of 504 Native American adults who responded aren’t “bothered” by the term “Redskins,” the group that has been pressuring Snyder to ditch the team name is unfazed by the outcome.

“The results of this poll confirm a reality that is encouraging but hardly surprising: Native Americans are resilient and have not allowed the NFL’s decades-long denigration of us to define our own self-image,” said National Congress of American Indians Executive Director Jackie Pata and Oneida Nation Representative Ray Halbritter in a statement issued by the Change the Mascot campaign. “However, that proud resilience does not give the NFL a license to continue marketing, promoting, and profiting off of a dictionary-defined racial slur — one that tells people outside of our community to view us as mascots.

“Social science research and first-hand experience has told us that this kind of denigration has both visible and unseen consequences for Native Americans in this country. This is especially the case for children, who were not polled and who are in a particularly vulnerable position to be bullied by the NFL. It is the 21st century — it is long overdue for Native Americans to be treated not as mascots or targets of slurs, but instead as equals.”

Frankly, the poll question that has generated the most publicity seems flawed and asymmetrical (regardless of whether the words were chosen to track the language of past polls on the topic). Specifically, the 504 Native American adults were asked, “The professional football team in Washington calls itself the Washington Redskins. As a Native American, do you find that name offensive, or doesn’t it bother you?”

It’s possible to regard a term as objectively offensive but not subjectively be bothered by it. Thus, it would have made more sense to ask two separate questions: (1) do you find it offensive, yes or no?; (2) does it personally bother you, yes or no?

All we know for now is that, of 504 Native American adults surveyed, nine percent believe that the term is offensive and 90 percent aren’t personally bothered by the term. Even without more clarify, the percentage of Native American adults offended by the term shouldn’t be ignored, especially since none of the other 31 NFL franchises carry a name that anyone could fairly deem offensive.

Meanwhile, the National Congress of American Indians continues to strongly oppose the term. So maybe the next Washington Post poll question should be whether 90 percent of a randomly-selected group of 504 Native American adults trumps the collective judgment and wisdom of “the oldest, largest and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native organization serving the broad interests of tribal governments and communities.”

107 responses to ““Change the Mascot” campaign calls poll results “hardly surprising”

  1. A longer and more detailed post for the opinion of one lobbying group than for the opinions of hundreds of Native Americans polled on the issue.

    Nice try.

  2. Most people don’t walk around all day being offended about stuff. Seems exhausting.

  3. Political correctness has become a disease that is destroying this country.

    Toughen up America.

  4. Meanwhile, the National Congress of American Indians continues to strongly oppose the term. So maybe the next Washington Post poll question should be whether 90 percent of a randomly-selected group of 504 Native American adults trumps the collective judgment and wisdom of “the oldest, largest and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native organization serving the broad interests of tribal governments and communities.”

    —-

    Right, who cares with the majority of Native Americans think…let’s just let the hand-picked elite decide. In fact, let’s forget about democracy all together. Let’s just ask the far left liberal establishment what we should think and let that be law. You know, since they “care about everyone.”

  5. Wow… The left can spin something like no other group. That actually impresses me how you can hear one thing and make it appear to be another way… and then worse we have a country with tens of millions of people who will believe it.

  6. Forget the self-serving histrionics by self-appointed “representatives”– when 90% of Indians are okay with the name: This fight is effectively OVER.

  7. Polls like this should be considered with a degree of skepticism. The polling data shows 56% of respondents weren’t affiliated with a tribe? My question would be, how did they identify the natives? The respondents were reached via telephone.

    The other recent thread on this site quickly turned into a cesspool of political rhetoric. This poll was a necessary data point, but it doesn’t provide a definitive answer on how to proceed in and of itself.

  8. Meanwhile, the National Congress of American Indians continues to strongly oppose the term. So maybe the next Washington Post poll question should be whether 90 percent of a randomly-selected group of 504 Native American adults trumps the collective judgment and wisdom of “the oldest, largest and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native organization serving the broad interests of tribal governments and communities.”

    ==================================

    A better question is whether “the oldest, largest and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native organization” is *actually* representing the views of those it claims to represent. Maybe this poll is evidence that they do not accurately represent the majority position of their supposed constituency?

  9. “Even without more clarify, the percentage of Native American adults offended by the term shouldn’t be ignored”

    —————————-

    I’m going to bring that up same logic when Hillary and Trump clinch the nominations and say “but this small percentage of voters want Kasich or Sanders! To heck with what most people think!”

  10. You must remember, the group National Congress of American Indians Executive Director Jackie Pata and Oneida Nation Representative Ray Halbritter speak for fly around in their jets while their own people live in comparative poverty on the reservations. Not exactly what I’d call accurate representation.

  11. I can hear it now…..the National Congress of American Indians will want their own bathrooms next week….

    When does it ALL end??????

  12. 509 people? lol.

    Look. Whatever about the name issue I’m tired of the conversation.

    But 509 people selected by a group who’s beset interest is in finding people who think the name is fine is hardly a legitimate ‘poll’.

    In fact it’s more alarming to me that in such a small sample size of people selected to specifically try and reinforce the organization’s point of view that the name is fine, over 50 of them said no way.

    There are over 4,100,000 native people living in the U.S.

    But good job on calling up 509 “random” shlubs to ask them about a sportsball team. Real accurate “poll”

    Give me a break.

  13. The sad fact is no matter how many polls reflect how small a percentage of respondents are bothered by it this will not go away. SJW’s can’t accept a single person being offended. Sadly, the fact that the lion’s share of the populace finds SJW’s themselves offensive is somehow lost on them.

  14. The only people that are offended are PC liberals that are not even native american, just like the guy that wrote this article They just hope they can talk native Americans to be offended PC garbage must stop!

  15. Is it possible that native Americans aren’t caught up in all the liberal media? If so, God bless them.

  16. Those who think this has anything to do with democracy are woefully uninformed. But then, polls also show that many Americans are woefully uninformed.

  17. People who don’t like the outcome of any poll will fond a way to find fault with the mechanics of the question. There is no such thing as a science that is beyond political manipulation or criyicismcriticism

  18. I’m just in awe……hang in there Dan!! (never thought I’d say those words…lol)

  19. We’re all going to be ok if I don’t care right? Thanks. I actually cared more about commenting that I don’t care.

    …well since I’m here anyways. I can see how that whiteskins, blackskins etc. are all racist, but I’ve always thought Redskins was more of a reference to their jersey color rather than actual skins. That’s why it’s capitalized. It’s a formal name as opposed to a slang term. Just my humble opinion at any rate.

  20. Admittedly I’m a ‘Skins fan, but I feel like a much better debate would be over whether Native Americans should be used as mascots at all rather than how different people feel about a specific word. The word has whatever power you give it. Can it be defined as a slur? Sure. Have I ever in my life heard it used as a slur? Absolutely not. That shouldn’t really be the point.

    People like to say “you wouldn’t call the team the Washington N-words”. True even if that is a lazy equivalency. You wouldn’t call the team the Washington African Americans either, which is the point I’m making.

    If you genuinely think the Washington Redskins are terrible but the Cleveland Indians are ok, then I think you focusing on the wrong details.

  21. A much bigger issue:

    The name of Washington’s owner should change! Nothing a sale wouldn’t cure.

  22. As a Norseman, I find the name “Viking” offensive. We were named this not by our culture but by Americans.

    See how easy that was?

  23. “This is especially the case for children, who were not polled and who are in a particularly vulnerable position to be bullied by the NFL.”
    ————————-

    Well, that’s it then game over.
    How can we all have been so blind? THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!! The NFL is bullying children!
    Henceforth the Washington professional football team will be referred to as the Washington Fluffy Unicorns.

  24. These whiners need to settle on an argument – is it the specific term “Redskins” that offends them, or is it “being reduced to mascots”?
    Because if it’s the latter, there are many, many nicknames/mascots that could be deemed as offensive.
    If it’s the former, I get it – but then that sucks the air out of all the bitching about “Indians”, “Braves”, “Fighting Sioux”, “Blackhawks”, etc.

    So make up your minds, whiners.

  25. @Hawknballs – Some literacy with respect to statistics helps. 509 participants can yield a quite accurate measurement. Most political polls have around 765 participants.

  26. especially since none of the other 31 NFL franchises carry a name that anyone could fairly deem offensive.

    “anyone could fairly deem offensive”? 90% of the population that is supposed to be offended, isn’t. Does that mean they are unfair?

  27. The Washington Post is a left leaning publication. If they could have slanted this more, they would have figured out a way. I wouldn’t trust the 10% number. It’s probably much less than 10% that are offended.

  28. Why would we be offended?

    Redskin is a native term for warrior…..

    Warriors would paint their face with red clay before battle.

    This has been and always will be a white mans problem. WE are stronger than that.

    Proud Lumbee

  29. the only people offended are the white politicians who pretend to be offended when the time is right. and then more white idiots go along pretending to be offended because thats what people do these days.

  30. Preface my statement with no offense (which means you can’t get offended!)

    Such an exhausting issue, nearly as tired of hearing about this as I am Tom Brady. It seems really strange that in the last 10 ish years that it seems as though every little thing in our society is nitpicked on a microscopic level to determine if someone would be offended…

    I’m fairly confident everything in life would offend someone if given the opportunity.

  31. I’m willing to bet that 90% of the team’s fans still find Danny Snyder to be offensive.

  32. In 8 years when Kanye West is president they will change the team names to the Washington LOL’s, Minnesota OMG’s, and the Cleveland LMFAO’s.

  33. 90% of the sample size that was polled.. That’s not the majority. Redskins was a form of payment.. The skin from Native Americans could be used just the same as cash because the Euros saw it as proof of thinning the herd

  34. Maybe there could be a compromise – change from “The Washington Redskins” to “The Washington Midgets”…….

    That’ll learn ’em…!!!…

    A certain percentage will ALWAYS be offended…..

  35. The OFFICAL yearly NFL Agenda:
    1) Combine
    2) Free Agency
    3) NFL Draft
    4) Rookie signings
    5) Redskin name Controversy
    6) Summer arrests
    7) Rookies report to camp
    8) Vets reports to camp
    9) Pre-season
    10) Final Cuts
    11) SEASON STARTS !!!!!!!!!!

  36. I am a shorter than average fellow (5’3) and as a fan of the Giants and Titans I am constantly being laughed at as trying to overcompensate or something. I am offended by my treatment and demand that I am not reduced to mascot status simply because of the football teams I like.

    I propose:
    The New York Regulars
    The Tennessee Mediums

  37. That poll was worded strangely and seems to lean a little left itself when asking “or doesn’t it bother you”. That question kind of implies that it should bother you.

    If there are 4 million native Americans in this country, then extrapolating the numbers out would suggest that around 400,000 of them are offended. Is that enough to cause a name change?

  38. As a transethnic person I know the ethnicity I was born with is not the one I feel comfortable with so I changed so as to not be offended.

    These ethnic exclusive political groups really persecute us transethinic people.

  39. I’m 45 years old and I cannot recall once in my lifetime where I have heard the word Redskins used in the context of a racial slur. It’s the dictionary that needs to be changed, not the name of a football team. We are living in the 21st century not the 1800s. In popular culture, you are MUCH more likely to hear the term Chief used in the context of a racial slur than you are Redskin. Words and people change and evolve throughout time. Anyone, with a modicum of common sense and logic knows that the team was named Redskins because Native Americans are revered, and not to denigrate them. Of course, we all know that when it come to political correctness, common sense and logic can’t factor in to the equation.

  40. I’ve been waiting to find out what Native Americans think about the name. Since they’re not offended, the issue is settled in my mind. I lean to the left and even I think political correctness is out of hand. So let’s retire this issue and move on to issues that really matter.

  41. Maybe the dictionary definition of Redskins should not be viewed as the judge, jury and executioner, as it has been. There’s a definition of redskins that many of us grew up with that meant pride, not racist views.

  42. I am “hardly surprised” you are trying to spin this. I am “hardly surprised” 90% are not offended. Time to end this crusade against the Redskins lemmings.

  43. why doesn’t the change the mascot campaign go after the red mesa high school football team named the redskins, maybe because its a school made up of navajo nations and they love the name and their team, love when white people tell other nations that they are offended

  44. An even better question would be whether the national Congress of American Indians should change its official position to better represent the views of the vast majority of the people it claims to represent

  45. I am a little curious if this poll of “native americans” includes those guys you know who are 1/32nd white but decide to label themselves as native american.

  46. “Regardless of your position on this issue, that poll question was as poorly-worded as it gets.”

    The wording:

    “Q: The professional football team in Washington calls itself the Washington Redskins. As a Native American, do you find that name offensive, or doesn’t it bother you?”

    Not seeing what the problem is.

    The cross-tabs are interesting. Support for the “Yes” position is low across all possible splits. Even among self-identifying liberals, support for ‘Yes’ is less than 20%. So we’re not even talking about “the Left” here.

    This is not a result I expected, but barring a systematic failure to sample properly, I’m not seeing what the issue is.

  47. Though if the NFL wants to get ahead on this issue, they could re-name the Titans the “Tennessee Rednecks”. And white folk from Appalachia can talk about how they’re not offended.

  48. “One that tells people outside of our community to view us as mascots”

    I have literally never met one person who views Native Americans as mascots. Try again, chief.

  49. I think they should change the name but let’s get something clearer the only people who bring up the dictionary definition of a word are people who can’t come up with a sound arguement. There are multiple meanings and uses of words that are found with in and with out of dictionaries. Which means you can not just use the definitions given from the most predominate and respected dictionary as proof that your arguement is more valid.

    In fact the New York justice system regularly uses the urban dictionary and slang dictionary websites as a source in court cases. They do this because even though Websters and The Oxford dictionary may be the most accurate when it comes to the proper uses of words they are far from the highest authority on slang words, slang statements, sayings, or colloquial uses or meanings of words.

    It’s like when Curt Shilling said Clinton should be buried under the jail. People ran and said oh my god he said Hilary should be killed over her emails. People tried to explain to them it’s just a saying. Like saying they should lock her up and throw away the key. You wanna know what there response was? They started quoting the dictionary definition of burying someone and how no where in the dictionary does it say that what Shilling said means what people are trying to tell them it means, and because of that he must really have meant she should be executed for her email scandal.

    So like I said even though I might agree with what they want I totally disagree with how they’re going about getting it. It’s intellectually dishonest to quote a dictionary definition of a word as if it’s proves your point for you. Especially when you don’t allow for other possible meanings of the word or statement..

  50. If 1 in ten people believe they are “bothered”, that is a lot of people. I guess if you are a minority, your voice doesn’t matter. Change the stupid name Snyder.

  51. Wait. What does this mean for PETA? It surely is wrong to marginalize animals by using them as mascots. Goodbye Lions, Bengals, Bears, Cardinals, Falcons, Seahawks, Eagles, Dolphins, Jaguars, Panthers, Rams, Broncos, and Colts.

    It would be equally wrong to celebrate people who exploit Mother Earth of her treasures or poison the environment with fumes from modernization. That means the end for you Steelers, 49ers, Packers, and Jets.

    Separation of religion from all public activities disqualifies the Saints, while praise of evil people who exploited the untamed west does in Cowboys and Texans. The Chiefs are out on the same reasoning as the Redskins.

    No celebration of terrorists or any nationalism is allowed. That drops the Raiders, Buccaneers, and Patriots.

    The Browns are disqualified for mere failure.

  52. Honestly, I am offended that people are always looking to be offended by something.

  53. This is all very simple.

    When Native Americans stop using the term “Redskins” to define their High School Mascot and team nickname, others can whine, moan and complain how offensive it is.

    Until then, they really have no argument!

  54. “they could re-name the Titans the “Tennessee Rednecks”.

    You know how popular the Rednecks would be? You could have the cheerleaders run out on to the field from a double wide, wearing boxers and wife beaters. You could have a giant beercan behind the endzone pop its top everytime the team scored a touchdown, Jeff Foxworthy could be the mascot, it’d be a hoot.

  55. Why do they want the Mascot changed? Whats offensive about the logo?

    “It needs to be said that an Indian from the State of Montana created the Redskins logo, and did it the right way. It represents the Red Nation, and it’s something to be proud of.” -Don Wetzel.

  56. Most of the people who are whining and pouting over this name are people that I’d bet aren’t even Native American. They are the type who have a cause they latch on to for whatever their “fave” celebrity is advocating or maybe some fraudulent professor (Ward Churchill anyone?) is spouting about.
    Many have never been around large numbers of Native Americans, except maybe for that trip to the Indian Casino for the gambling, perhaps to the spa for “me time” or with their “besties” on a weekend jaunt. No, I bet most of these whiney pale faced pc types would probably faint if they visited, let’s say the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. Or one of the First Nations lands in Canada.
    When they see the myriad of problems the residents of this reservation (and others) are living with (in no particular order I might add)
    1. High unemployment and Illiteracy
    2. Serious health issues like diabetes and heart disease to name a few
    3. Disturbing numbers of domestic violence
    4. High incidents of rape and sexual crimes
    5. Record numbers of suicide and other mental health issues
    6. Squalid poverty that is on par with third world or developing world nations
    7. Gang activity
    Then it might occur to the pc patrol that the folks in these places have a lot more pressing issues than a team name.

  57. In other news a plane was just bombed by terrorists and 60+ innocent people lost their lives. There, I just put it all into perspective…I sure hope I did anyway.

  58. It appears that the National Congress of American Indians and Mr. Florio are not going to allow themselves to be confused by the facts. Hooray for them. SMH

  59. mibengal says:
    May 19, 2016 3:52 PM
    If 1 in ten people believe they are “bothered”, that is a lot of people. I guess if you are a minority, your voice doesn’t matter. Change the stupid name Snyder.

    —————————–

    No, it’s not. It’s one person out of ten people. That’s one of the dumbest things I’ve ever read.

    Go to your safe space already.

  60. I’m personally offended by the billions of tax dollars given annually to the Indian nations in this country. Free housing, healthcare, education, and a tax exempt status.

    It’s also made them totally dependent on government to this day.

  61. Auugh can it Ray Halbritter… the name is never going to change. Go research Mr. Halbritter and you’ll see what he’s all about. This guy is probably a billionaire from his Turning Stone Casino and Golf Resort. Meanwhile his “people” are poor as they come. He uses this fake outrage to benefit personally just like that race-baiter Al Sharpton. They are vert similar except Ray is hundreds of times richer than Sharpton. At least Ray doesn’t get others to pay his fines and tax debts for him.

  62. Also, guys like Halbritter aren’t offended by the name. They are just mad a white man makes money off of it and they aren’t getting their cut. If guys like Halbritter got a cut of the profits they’d be fine with it ala the Seminole Tribe of Florida. They’re fine with Florida State now they made a deal for a % of thr football teams merchandising profits. They even sell FS merchandise at their huge Seminole Casino. The only reason the Seminole tribe of Okla-humma (translation “Red People”) is opposed is because they weren’t included in the deal with Florida State. If they were they’d be fine with it too.

  63. The poll was conducted by the very liberal, leftist Washington Post not by the Washington Redskins. So don’t accuse the ‘Skins of stuffing the ballot box. That’s the job of the Washington Lefties, and not the pitching staff of the Nationals.

  64. With 25% of the country having mental health issues I’m surprised the number wasn’t higher than 9%. Certain PFT bloggers and the 9% need to seek out therapy immediately.

  65. 9% of Native Americans might be offended if the Redskins DID change their name, since many feel that it honors Native American values and heritage.

    Can we please stop telling people what they should and shouldn’t find offensive? It seems like Native Americans pretty much have this “issue” figured out.

  66. in 1980 Ronald Reagan had 90.9% of the votes to Jimmy Carters 9.1% does that mean Jimmy Carter should have won the election?

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