Wednesday, May 9, 2012

New Team Names for the Redskins

Among my many other reasons for rooting against the Washington Redskins every year is the fact that the team is named after a casually offensive racial slur.  One retort I usually hear from Redskins fans (when they take a moment from cleaning themselves with sticks and leaves as they desperately try to learn to walk upright) is "hey!  It's not offensive, the term 'redskin' is an homage, a term of endearment!  Now help me pick grubs off of my back hair."

Of course, my assumption that the term is offensive isn't really based on a personal sense of offense--I'm 0/32 Native American, which makes me 1/32 less Native American than "whiter-than-Whole Foods" Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren.  However, I'd be equally uncomfortable rooting for a team called the "Blackskins" with a racial caricature of a black guy on the helmet, or the "Yellowskins" with a racial caricature of a Chinese guy scrawled on the playing field. 

I'll grant that most defenders of the Redskins team name aren't trying to insult Indians--but beyond the discomfort with this politically incorrect name there's also the issue that there's not a large Native American population in the D.C. area.  When you think "D.C." you don't generally add "ah, the city with a lot of Indian tribes native to the area!"  Unless I don't know my history, about the times when Chief Gaithersburg led the Rockville tribe in forging a treaty with Chief Arlington, leader of the Lorton.  With that in mind, might I suggest some more appropriate team names for D.C.'s NFL franchise:

1) The Lobbyists.  Bow down before their influential glory!

2) The Interns.  They accept no pay, merely summer stipends! 

3) The Protesters.  Tremble before their loud, ineffectual screeching!

4) The Tourons.  Much like their namesakes, they will block any attempt to get by them, whether on the gridiron or our city sidewalks.

5) The Immune Diplomats.  Don't try to penalize them, they have immunity! 

6) The Bigots.  They can laughably keep the title "civil rights hero" while speaking out against Asian shopkeepers trying to do business in their Ward!

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