Las Vegas Sun

January 22, 2018

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letter to the editor:

Brouhaha over team’s name is silly

I like the Washington Redskins.

There, I’ve said it. Does that make me insensitive? I guess it does, according to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and columnist Clarence Page (“Now it’s your turn, Redskins owner Snyder,” Thursday’s Sun).

Reid was even quoted as saying “How long will the NFL continue to do nothing, zero, as one of its teams bears a name that inflicts so much pain on Native Americans?”

When did everyone become so sensitive that a single word could inflict so much imaginary pain? You know what really brings so much pain on Native Americans and Nevadans? Reid and the columnist.

The most widely accept theory as to the origin of the name Redskins for the Washington football team goes back to 1933 when the name was chosen to honor their coach, Lone Star Dietz.

Some 59 nine years later, a small group of Native Americans attempted to sue the Washington Redskins over the name, but the Supreme Court refused to hear the case on the grounds that the group waited too long.

If this name brought so much pain and suffering, why did it take 59 years for this group to react?

I don’t think anyone, including Redskins owner Dan Snyder and most Native Americans, believe this name was meant to be a racial slur. It wasn’t. To this day the name Redskins is synonymous with a Washington football team. Nothing more or nothing less.

Now could it be offensive to some individuals? Yes, but that’s their problem because they look for the darker side of words and deeds while the rest of us see things as they actually are. It’s the name of one of the greatest football franchises in NFL history.

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