ProFootballTalk: Should Congress get involved with Redskins?

Congress is pushing for the Washington Redskins to change their name to a less offensive term, and Mike Florio has no problem with the government stepping into NFL jurisdiction.

This video is no longer available. Click here to watch more NBC Sports videos!

17 responses to “ProFootballTalk: Should Congress get involved with Redskins?

  1. How about congress help the people in OK recover from the tornado or help me by figuring out how to lower the price of gas! I am part crow Indian and I could give a crap what the team is named and I don’t need any one to speak on my behalf. This country has a lot bigger problems than the mascot of a NFL team.

  2. He has no problem with that? Really? Who would have guessed?

    I think he, congress, and the issue can all be summed up in a few remarks from Stephen Dodson, a hereditary chief of the Aleutian People: (Source: Google “Native American Chief Talks About Redskins”)

    ““People are speaking for Native Americans that aren’t Native American…we had a big problem with all the things that were coming out [of the discussion]…they were basically saying that we were offended, our people were offended, and they were misrepresenting the Native American nation… Redskin’ isn’t something given to us by the white man or the blue eyes, it was something in the Native American community that was taken from us. [It’s] used also as a term of respect, because that’s how we were. We respected each other with that term… It just bothered me that somebody would twist something so negatively when it’s a positive.”

    “[Much of the discussion over the Redskins name is led by non-Natives, and that makes me] Irritated. Irritated is a polite term to say… When you have people trying to represent our nation, you should be from our nation. Don’t represent our nation if you don’t even have an ounce of blood in you.”

    Well, I think that about wraps that up.

    Dodson certainly doesn’t speak for all Natives, but his opinion about who should be speaking for all Natives seems very conclusive.

  3. Fist off, I would like to commend congressman Tom Cole of Oklahoma for finding the time to spend on this trivial issue during a period of tremendous heartache and despair in his home state.

    I am very excited for his next letter, which will be to gov. Mary Fallin requesting that the name of the state of Oklahoma be changed. Because, as he most certainly knows, the name “Oklahoma” comes from a Chocktaw term meaning “red people”.

    Hypocrite POS

  4. The current philosophy in Washington DC regarding the government is ” If it ain’t broke, then it must need us to fix it”. This way of thinking was introduced by the progressive liberals and their “Big Government is better” attitude. Unfortunately, there are way to many “Moderate Conservatives” who have no backbone which makes them even worse than the libs. My message to Congress is “Focus People”!!!! Keep your eye on the ball and take care of the big issues and leave the fringe items for a time when the USA isn’t being targeted by a dumbass North Korean, when real unemployment isn’t well in excess of 15%, when we aren’t in a sequester with a President who wants the citizens to feel the pain while he and his family take vacations on the taxpayer’s dime. There are plenty of top priority issues that need your attention and the Washington Redskins’ name is not one of them, not even close.

    I have a strong faith in God but I can’t say the same for my fellow countrymen, these idiots in Washington have proved they can’t do the job and they all need to go, no matter which side they’re on.

  5. I think congress needs to worry about better things then the name of a NFL football team. With all the issues we face as a nation this is a minor thing. I get that the name was used as an offensive term some years and years ago, but we were able to take that name and make it something that we idolized and not something that we look down on. When anyone says i hate the redskins we all know that they are talking about the football team not native americans, but thanks to all of these stories my kids are going to grow up knowing that the word Redskin is a racist term so thank you. I dont know what you were trying to accomplish but now my kids will know that they can use it as a racist term. Dont we as people want to get to a point where we can use these words without any racist undertone to it??? The original meaning of the N word is not what it is used for today. The F word for gay people is not supposed to be used for what it is use today, wouldnt it be nice that one day in the future those words and many more could be used for its original meaning and not what some racist prick decided to use it for???

  6. N-O. Congress has more important things to worry about. When the government gets involved things usually get worse. They are like the boss at work who makes decisions despite having minimal knowledge of the job position. Leave us alone and let us do our job. The people can handle this situation. In a way we have already started to fix it by voicing our opinions and putting heat on Snyder.

  7. NO, but this is a good read on why the team should consider changing their name:

    I’m not sure how the Redskins got their name, but here is what the term means… Back not so long ago, when there was a bounty on the heads of the Indian people, the trappers would bring in Indian scalps along with the other skins that they had managed to trap or shoot. These scalps brought varying prices, as did the skins of the animals. The trappers would tell the trading post owner (or whoever it was that he was dealing with) that he had 2 bearskins, a couple of beaver skins… and a few scalps. Well, the term “scalp” offended the good Christian women of the community and they asked that another term be found to describe these things. So, the trappers and hunters began using the term “redskin”… They would tell the owner that they had bearskin, deer skins… and “redskins.” The term came from the bloody mess that one saw when looking at the scalp. Thus the term “red” skin because it was the “skin” of an “animal” just like the others that they had, so it became “redskins.”

    To add to that, should the Vikings change their name, since vikings were murderers and rapists? Hmmm…good question, but not one that congress should be tapping into.

  8. Hey audioflint what you’re posting isn’t true. There is no historical evidence that the term “redskin” is based on scalps or bounty or any crap like that. I’ll post some snippets from an article done by the Smithsonian Institute that researched the name.

    “You can read speeches by the Meskwaki chief Black Thunder and the Omaha chief Big Elk in which the expression redskin is used, and early nineteenth century examples of the Meskwaki usage of terms meaning redskin and whiteskin.”

    Goddard(guy from smithsonian who wroter the article) shows that the term redskin is a translation from native American languages of a term used by native Americans for themselves. Harjo’s(Harjo’s some idiot) claim that it “had its origins in the practice of presenting bloody red skins and scalps as proof of Indian kill for bounty payments” is UNSUPPORTED BY ANY EVIDENCE.⁴ . . . the term was neutral, not pejorative, and indeed was often used in contexts in which whites spoke of Indians in positive terms. Goddard concludes:

    Cooper’s use of redskin as a Native American in-group term was entirely authentic, reflecting both the accurate perception of the Indian self-image and the evolving respect among whites for the Indians’ distinct cultural perspective, whatever its prospects. The descent of this word into obloquy is a phenomenon of more recent times.”

    I’d post a link but I’m not sure that’s allowed on here.

  9. Real indians: brown skinned indians who live on reservations couldn’t care less about this non-issue. It’s the white indians who are trying to feel more indian or the wacko pc politicians who are offended. Let the brown people speak for themselves.

  10. audioflint says:
    May 30, 2013 10:25 AM
    NO, but this is a good read on why the team should consider changing their name:

    I’m not sure how the Redskins got their name, but here is what the term means… Back not so long ago, when there was a bounty on the heads of the Indian people, the trappers would bring in Indian scalps along with the other skins that they had managed to trap or shoot….
    It’s called citing your sources buddy– and you can’t because that isn’t supported by any evidence. At no point in American history were there “bounties” on the heads of Natives. Were White settlers frequently cruel, aggressive and unfair in their dealings with Natives? Absolutely. But the idea that someone would pay them to go out and murder Indians is just preposterous. Where’s the monetary incentive?

    If you actually do any of your own reading on the subject, rather than parroting unsourced “facts” from others you would realize that there are two accepted arguments on the subject: the term either describes the comparative skin tones of Natives and White or it describes the way Natives would smear their faces with clay or red dye before going into battle.

    Even if your argument was true, it clearly isn’t an issue. Words can be repurposed over time, and clearly Walter Wetzel, president of the National Congress of American Indians, was unphased by the term when he sanctioned the name and personally designed the logo in 1967.

  11. skinsfan91 says:
    May 30, 2013 12:57 PM
    Harjo’s(Harjo’s some idiot) claim that it “had its origins in the practice of presenting bloody red skins and scalps as proof of Indian kill for bounty payments” is UNSUPPORTED BY ANY EVIDENCE.
    You have a good point, but use of inflammatory language and capital letters kind of detract from it. Though she is certainly dishonest here, Susan Harjo of 50% Native descent, who, despite never living on a reservation; has made a rather substantial living out of suing, or threatening to sue, the United States government and various corporations for infringing on Native rights.

    In other words, she’s certainly not an idiot, but her life’s work has been exploiting Natives’ problems and history for personal gain, and anything she says should be taken with a grain of salt.

  12. The redskins started in Boston and later moved to DC. Boston already had the Redsox as their baseball team. So they renamed the football team from the braves to the redskins. I can guess that this was probably largely the help the new team more easily fit in with the Boston area. Everything is Redsox up there. It’s a sea of red shirts and hats. Changing from the braves to redskins? I doubt they were thinking of racist terms, just going from 1 Indian name to another back in the 1930’s. congress needs to stop meddling. How the name came about wasn’t racially charged. Their was no hatred attached. It’s just a team name.

  13. When do you hear people say they “hate the redskins” and not immediately think football? 80 years ago if you felt gay, it meant you were happy? Our enterpretation of language is ever changing. At some point people just need to move on and let thinks go. The same government that slaughtered millions of native Americans and herded them up like cattle? It’s a word, it’s a couple letters. Words don’t convey rasism, the words get their power from the people who make a big deal over nothing. Rappers can drop N-bombs and nobody cares because there is no racist undertones conveyed. The words are just a few letters. And if anything, the more people cheer at redskins games and celebrate the word with happiness in their hearts? I would think that’s a way of moving on and not focusing on only the negative. Are there any native Americans who care to share their thoughts?

Leave a Reply

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