Washington D.C. will be hosting its first ever Thanksgiving game on Thursday, and with the honor comes new charges that its NFL team, the Washington Redskins, has a racist name.
“The NFL — for all their corporate rhetoric about being something that ‘brings the country together’ — of course has a team named after a Native American racial slur in the nation’s capital,” The Nation correspondent Dave Zirin wrote on Friday
Zirin said it was insulting for the NFL to allow the Redskins, a name he said “exists only because of genocide and displacement,” to have center stage on Thanksgiving.
Ray Halbritter, a representative for Oneida Nation and spokesman for the Change the Mascot Campaign, told Zirin that Thanksgiving is a “difficult day for many Native Americans, because the holiday story promoted in popular culture often omits the oppression, violence, and bloodshed that our people faced when Europeans migrated to this continent.”
Halbritter said the NFL was throwing salt on the wound on marginalized Native Americans for promoting the Redskin’s “derogatory name.”
Halbritter added that the NFL is sending a message that “it is perfectly acceptable to promote a painful racial slur.”
“At a time when our political debate is so polarized and filled with invective, we should be able to agree that the NFL should not promoting a racial slur.”
On Tuesday’s edition of “The Five,” co-host Kimberly Guilfoyle urged viewers to pumped the break on the scandal, saying the issues surrounding the Redskins’ name “is not a legitimate controversy.
“I don’t think anybody is worked up over the Redskins playing on Thanksgiving, except for a few far-left crazies,” Guilfoyle said. “No one cares about this.”
To prove her point, Guilfoyle cited a 2016 Washington Post poll that showed that less than 10 percent of Native Americans found the Redskins name offensive.
“Nine out of 10 Native Americans said they are not offended by the Redskins name, according to a Washington Post poll,” Guilfoyle said.
“So who exactly is worked up?” she asked.
Co-host Jesse Watters chimed in, joking that the controversy surrounding the Redskins name doesn’t matter since they will lose to the New York Giants in their prime-time game Thursday.
“It doesn’t matter what you call them, they’re going to lose anyway,” Watters said.
Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder has vowed to never change the name of his team.
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