The NFL preseason has started, which also means a return to the hot-button issue of whether the Washington Redskins should change its name in light of complaints from inside and outside the Beltway that it is offensive to Native Americans.
The Redskins are looking to move to a new stadium. But when asked at a press conference. President Bruce Allen said at a press conference that the team won't change the name (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRTdlXqe7Ow), even if it could impede the process of finding a new home.
Asked whether, if he decided D.C. was the right place, and "the team name proves a political barrier, would reconsideration of the team name be part of [his] thinking," Allen provided a one-word answer, "no," smiling as he did so.
The FCC has denied challenges to radio and TV stations that used the name by groups claiming it was indecent or hate speech. The FCC said the name did not fall under those definitions in its rules. But the U.S. Patent Office says it won't protect the patents on team merchandise using the name and this past June, Education Secretary Arne Duncan tweeted that the name should be changed.
Numerous members of Congress have also called for the change, including threatening to eliminate the NFL's tax-exempt status because the league hasn't taken action to get the Washington Redskins to change its name.
“The team and its leaders are so obsessed with clinging to a dictionary-defined racial slur that they are willing to abandon their hometown and local fans in order to continue degrading Native Americans," said Joel Barkin, spokesman for the Change the Mascot campaign, a leading voice for scrapping the name. "The NFL, Commissioner Roger Goodell, and the other owners should immediately step forward now that the Washington team is publicly declaring its willingness to abandon Washington in order to retain its racial slur mascot.”