(Note: In honor of the egregiously political decision to rescind the Washington Redskins trademark for the word “Redskins,” I’m reposting something I wrote on the subject a few months ago. The world has gone insane. Upside: now that there’s no trademark, I can use this swell graphic.)
The NFL as we know it is doomed. From Andrew Johnson at the Corner:
National Football League commissioner Roger Goodell is willing to listen to objections to the Washington Redskins name, he says, though the decision to change its name isn’t ultimately his.
“If one person is offended, we have to listen,” Goodell said on a D.C.-area radio station on Wednesday. The NFL has insisted that the name is used in “a highly respectful manner” and has “always intended to be positive.”
The name has stirred controversy in recent months as activists have stepped up protests that it’s offensive to American Indians.
“If one person is offended…” he says. One person. One. Doesn’t that give the one person who’s most inclined to be a crybaby a whole lot of leverage?
I think it would behoove the NFL, and the country in general, to stop ceding the moral high ground to the people who complain the most. Because those people tend to be the kind of people whom you don’t want making decisions for you. But that’s not the way it’s going in the National Feelings League.
And another thing: we’ve decided that “Redskins” is a horrible ethnic slur. But that claim doesn’t even hold up logically. The fact that there’s a football team named Redskins demonstrates that.
People are very emotionally invested in their sports teams. They love them; sometimes they love them so much that it’s kind of unhealthy. But you don’t name something you love after something you hate.
Nobody names their new baby “Hitler.” Nobody names their new puppy “IRS.” And if people thought that “Redskins” was a horrible slur, they would never have given that name to their football team. The fact that they gave the team that name proves that they thought it was a worthy name for something they loved. But of course, I realize that logic means nothing in the great American ethnic grievance sweepstakes.