What is a slur? Redskins case forces us to decide

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  • Rock Calgary, Alberta
    June 23, 2014 1:09 a.m.

    How tough would it be to simply change the name to the Washington Reds.
    Cincinatti's baseball team seems to get away with it. ( Yes, I know, they were originally the Red Stockings)
    Canadas CFL Football League has a team with the dumbest name, I think, in the history of sport, and no-one seems to cry racism, the Ottawa RedBlacks.
    Change it and drop it.

  • Mark B Eureka, CA
    June 22, 2014 8:34 p.m.

    There are no restrictions on the NFL team name. But the new situation will hurt the team's bottom line. It's the owner's call which option is less odious.

  • RBB Sandy, UT
    June 22, 2014 12:48 p.m.

    Remember - the term mormon was a slur to describe people who joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Instead of getting upset about it, the LDS members embraced it.

  • Brio Alpine, UT
    June 22, 2014 12:42 p.m.

    One thing is indisputable. There is nothing in the Constitution which allows the government to tell what a private business owner can name his or her business... or what is or is not "politically correct".
    The publics support or lack thereof determines such things in a free society... and as the originators of the Constitution intended.

    Obama's over-reach of government and its intended powers seems to have no limits. We are given example after example on an almost weekly basis. It seems to keep growing and expanding. It truly needs to be reigned in, and soon.

  • Uncle_Fester Niskayuna, NY
    June 22, 2014 10:49 a.m.

    I have never heard the term "redskin" in my entire life used in anything other than referring to the football team. It's not in the category of the N word or other disparaging terms simply because it isn't used that way by anyone. This lawsuit and action by the trademark office is wholly political and is based in divisive liberal politics with ironic illiberal results. What's next, five Danes getting together and complaining about the use of Vikings? The whole thing is ridiculous.

  • dave31 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 22, 2014 9:09 a.m.

    Perhaps the name "Washington Redskins" has become outdated since there are very few Native Americans living in the DC area. A practical solution would be to rename the team "The Washington Red Inks." That name uses most of the letters of the current name, and there is plenty of Red Ink flowing in DC.

  • 1hemlock Tooele, Utah
    June 22, 2014 7:41 a.m.

    NOT so GaryO and pretzel. U-tar has it right . .. thin skin.
    There is a trend of people being offended for other people and showing off their "righteous indignation" in behalf of others. One example: blogging comments and comments in the news re: blacks not being able to hold the priesthood comes to mind (even though anyone who was not of the house of Israel at the time of Christ would not have held the priesthood anyway and so should I pout and pull what ever hair I have out because of it?. . . but I digress). But most blacks could care less.
    Here are some references to think about.
    Ives Goddard is a senior linguist at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of History wrote the book, I am a Redskin: The Adoption of a Native American Expression (1769-1826) and notes the earliest uses of “red skin” were in recorded statements from Natives by the French who generally traded amicably with them. The French were careful to denote the “red” distinction was made by Natives themselves. (oops)
    In 2004 the Annenberg Public Policy Center found that 90 percent of American Indians are not offended by the Washington Redskins retaining their nickname. (oops)

  • Eliyahu Pleasant Grove, UT
    June 22, 2014 7:14 a.m.

    @Sore loser
    tampa, fl

    "I wonder how the liberal media and liberals in general would act if..."

    Damned if they do, damned if they don't. The usual complaint here is that it's the "liberals" and "liberal media" that are so oversensitive about these things, and now you're whining that the same people are perpetuating racially offensive names. Make up your mind. The biggest defenders of "Redskins" and similar names tend to be right wing talk radio; not the left.

    While I, a liberal, would just as soon see the name changed, the one thing that troubles me is the judge's use of an arbitrary 30% level to decide if it's offensive. Since when does a minority opinion rule in court decisions? This isn't about civil rights, which don't need a majority in favor of granting or sustaining them.

    A sensible team owner would look at public opinion and think, "Hey, this name is offending some of the people I want to buy tickets to the games and team merchandise. I need to change it to improve my bottom line."

  • pretzel South Jordan, UT
    June 21, 2014 11:13 p.m.

    One day, one of my first grade students limped into the room and reported that a fellow student had kicked him. When questioned, they related their versions of the same incident. I stopped in my tracks when the "offender," in his defense shouted, "I kicked you but it didn't hurt!" This was a perfect teaching moment: I explained that he could not be the one to determine how much pain his victim felt; he had no way of knowing. Mr. Snyder, it has only been a few years since your Jewish people were hunted, disparaged, maligned, disenfranchised, imprisoned, and murdered as were the Native Americans. We cannot possibly imagine the pain they experienced! Yet, their perpetrators were in denial, completely oblivious to the pain they inflicted. You are now causing pain- it's a reality you deny. The matter of a team name may seem trivial to you but it matters a great deal to those you disparage but claim to honor. Certainly, you would not tolerate a team name that would be offensive to Jews. I liken you to my indifferent first grade student, "I kick you, but it doesn't hurt!"

  • Mark B Eureka, CA
    June 21, 2014 10:15 p.m.

    Did Broadway move to Florida?

  • Hamath Omaha, NE
    June 21, 2014 8:27 p.m.

    Just as Mormons should be able to define what they think themselves (and not allow others to do so), we should all allow Native Americans to be able to define what they think themselves and not allow others to do so.

  • Sore loser tampa, fl
    June 21, 2014 7:11 p.m.

    I wonder how the liberal media and liberals in general would act if they made a Broadway musical about the sacred dances and beliefs of the Native Americans spiced up with all sorts of vulgar crude derogatory insults toward their society. Nominate it for a Tony Award?

  • GaryO Virginia Beach, VA
    June 21, 2014 4:25 p.m.

    "A recent study by the California State University, San Bernadino reports 67% of Native Americans find the Washington Redskins name and imagery racist."

    There's your majority.

  • U-tar Woodland Hills, UT
    June 21, 2014 4:15 p.m.

    From the Red Skins to the Thin Skins, you all need to take a chill pill