2014 Pulitzer Prize Winner

To Redskins owner Danny Boy Snyder: Your racist nickname IS an issue

Published: April 23, 2014, 12:01 pm, by David Ramsey


Danny Boy Snyder is such a riot. He’s a rich guy who believes he can dictate reality. He announced yesterday that his team’s nickname – the Redskins – is “not an issue.”

Only the nickname is an issue. And will remain an issue. A contentious, lingering issue that will follow Danny Boy around for as long as he refuses to drop a racist moniker.

Snyder pretends Native American support is unanimous. It’s not. I am on record as opposing the Redskins moniker, but I’ve never pretended all Native Americans agree with me. Several polls claim the majority of Native Americans support the nickname, but we’re still waiting for a comprehensive poll that will clarify the issue.

Danny Boy should listen to Michele Companion, a member of the Mohawk Nation and our local Native American community. She does not feel honored by the Redskins moniker.

“I find the Redskins nickname degrading. I find all the nicknames racist, hurtful, offensive. . The fact that we’re still treated like cartoon characters is not a small issue. It’s a reflection of how so many people in society actually see us.”

Companion, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, realizes several polls claim a majority of Native Americans support the nicknames. Those polls baffle her.

“I’ve yet to meet any person who self-identified to me as Native American who has come out and said, ‘Oh, yeah, I think we should have the Redskins, the Chiefs and the Braves.’ I’ve never met a Native American who supports Native American nicknames,” Companion said.

Danny Boy said Tuesday it’s time for critics of the Redskins moniker to “focus on reality.”

Here’s his problem:

He’s rich, but not rich enough to alter reality. The nickname is an issue, and it always will be.

Another problem with this “focus on reality.”

Danny Boy heads the most poorly run franchise in professional sports. And we’re talking anywhere on our earth.