Sunday, February 7, 2010

Woo! The Superbowl was tonight! Let's talk about a racist team name...

Amanda J. Cobb‘s article “The National Museum of the American Indian as Cultural Sovereignty” spoke of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian as a victory for Native Americans because of its function as a tool through which they can gain an upper hand in the construction and representation of their identity. It seemed ironic in the face of the recent Supreme Court decision to not hear a Native American activist group’s claim that the Washington Redskin’s team name is offensive and thus should not be trademarked. Though the decision was based solely off of how much time had passed before the group made a claim, and not off of the offensiveness of the name, the attitude of the parties involved seemed to say a lot about the country’s attitude towards Native Americans. The team’s owner has stated that there has never been “even a whisper” about changing the name. I think it sad that in 2010, a team representing the capital of this nation will not even discuss changing its name when it is clearly deeply offensive and perpetuates negative stereotypes about a minority group. I think the fact that the activist group waited so long from the time that the team name was trademarked in 1967 is a pitiful excuse. It should never be too late for a historically underserved minority group to gain the momentum to take a stand against a major representation of oppression.

Look at this Washington Post article to find out more about the ruling, it’s where I got my information about it.

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