?The R-word and Racist Native American Sports Team Logos Essay

Racial names have long existed and plagued our society, Native Americans throughout the state see the R-word a racial, derogative slur along the same lines of other hurtful, calumniatory, and violative cultural abuses including the N-word among African-Americans, the K-word for the Judaic and the W-word amongst Latinos. Above all, the portraiture of stereotyped Indian images is common in American popular civilization ( i.e. Jeep Cherokee, Land O’Lakes butter ) . Furthermore, the usage of Indian Son or mascots at both the professional and high school degree in athleticss has become progressively controversial. Therefore, the remotion of Native American mascots from athleticss squads is necessary to contend the unfairness of the negative intensions and stereotypes that are typical in the word picture of Indians. Our society must go cognizant of how really racist the word “redskin” is and how really derogatory the portraiture of the Native American is in so many commercial and clean events.

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Interestingly, Merriam-Webster’s definition defines “Redskin” as a really violative slang used as a derogative term for a Native American and should be avoided. The fact that many Americans are non cognizant of the definition of the term “redskin” or are unsighted to see into believing that this term means strong, weather, and brave gives them a false sense of understanding to the true testament of the word “redskin” that is to a great extent misunderstood and overlooked in today’s society. First, by sing the term “Redskin” has for centuries been used to minimize and mortify an full people. The significance originated in colonial times when bargainers and local authorities paid for teguments. There was a certain monetary value paid for assorted carnal teguments. On that list was the term “Red-skin, ” which referred to bloody scalps of American Indians ensuing from a Native American traversing the way of a premium huntsman.

Most of the affected folks were Penobscots, Passamaquoddy, Wampanoag, Mashpee Wampanoag and others along the New England coastal line. The ground they were paid for these scalps, the settlers were working to take the American Indian presence and take over their land. Furthermore, the original name was a European one used to depict Algonquians who painted their face with bright ruddy ochre and puccoon, accordingly doing their face ruddy with war pigment. In add-on, ruddy is the most common colour used by Native Americans in painting their tegument. Harmonizing to Dress Clothing of the Plains Indians by Ronal P. Koch, “Red is by and large accepted as being one of the colourss most easy available to and most used by Indians for cosmetic and ceremonial purposes.”

In recent developments, the Non-Disparagement of Native American Persons or Peoples in Trademark Registration Act of 2013 ( H.R. 1278 ) introduced by U.S. Congressman Eni Faleomavaega of the Territory of American Samoa states that this measure would necessitate cancellation of bing hallmark enrollments for hallmarks utilizing the term “redskin” in mention to Native Americans. It would besides deny enrollment for new hallmarks so utilizing the term “redskin” would be deemed improper, the measure has begun to pick up steam and has garnered state broad support through the backups of Native Americans and Non-Native American organisations in recommending an terminal to the usage of the term “redskin” which constitutes a racial slur and is belittling, derogatory, demeaning, and violative to Native Americans. Harmonizing to the United States House of Representative’s web site, documented in a missive to Members of Congress, the National Congress of American Indians ( NCAI ) which is the oldest, largest and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native organisation functioning tribal authoritiess and communities late stated:

This statute law will carry through what Native American people, states, and organisations have tried to make in the tribunals for about twenty old ages – end the racialist name that has served as the [ name ] of Washington’s pro football franchise for far excessively long.

The Tulsa Indian Coalition Against Racism ( TICAR ) asserts that the “R-word” is “hurtful and deleterious to our young person, every bit good as the full Native American population.” Consequently, the Native American Finance Officers Association ( NAFOA ) affirms: The term has ne’er been acceptable in the Native community and causes injury to the corporate self-pride and position of American Indians in the larger society. . . What should be viewed as a national embarrassment has someway turned into a famed namesake for a national athletics?

Further, the American Indian Movement West ( AIM-WEST ) sustains that:

Our organisation supports the end of fring the athleticss universe of the belittling name of the Washington pro football franchise. There is no inquiry that this is a racist term that causes injury and hurt, whether or non it is intended to make so, and must non be tolerated in nice society.

Equally good as, the United South and Eastern Tribes, Inc. ( USET ) expresses:

Get the better ofing the societal challenges ensuing from industry stigmatization and media exposure has taken coevalss for other groups. Native communities are on a similar journey. In our work to protect and advance our sovereignty rights at all degrees, bing stereotypes, dogmatism, and racist positions about our people frequently get in the manner of advancement. This statute law will help Tribes in advancing an apprehension of American Indian civilization, positive images of Indian Country, the effects of historic injury, and the contemporary successes and challenges Tribes face as we seek to better the criterion of life within our communities.

In add-on to the above organisations, there are 50 other organisations that have either pledged their support for this measure or rejected the usage of the term ‘Redskin, ’ among them are the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, the Comanche Nation of Oklahoma, the Oneida Indian Tribe of Wisconsin, the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, the National Indian Youth Council, the National Indian Child Welfare Association, the American Indian Higher Education Consortium, the National Indian Education Association, the National American Indian House Council every bit good as a long laundry list of other noteworthy organisations.

Second, the stereotyped Indian images in American dad civilization known as “Tribalism, ” as Ruth Hopkins, a editorialist for the Indian Country Today Media Network concedes “as a mainstream tendency mostly based on false, stereotyped impressions of who autochthonal people are has become a pop civilization phenomenon.” Among those are celebutantes, dad princesses and hippie aspirants have been have oning noticeable, overdone war bonnets and headgears, have oning “war pigment, ” and playing frock up in Native American “inspired” costumes in record Numberss. She goes on to exemplify that the prolongation of stereotyped images of Native peoples is unacceptable and discriminatory for a overplus of grounds. ( Hopkins )

Clearly, Non-natives who wear American Indian costumes are feigning to be person of another race. Those who play “dress up” by have oning an American Indian costume, headgear or war bonnet are non merely neglecting to admit the being of over 500 recognized Native states, each separate and distinguishable from one another, they are doing visible radiation of centuries of agony, subjugation and slaughter endured by the autochthonal people of this state. Enforcing racial stereotypes of Native peoples as barbarians in characterless plumes and periphery besides perpetuates the myth that American Indians are non active members of modern society and casts them aside to do them experience farther disrespected and unworthy as a depleted and lost society. ( Hopkins )

Actually, non all American Indian folks include war bonnets or headgears as portion of their traditional insignia. Of those who do, headgears and war bonnets were worn by work forces, and have nil to make with manner or the sexual objectification of adult females. Hopkins expresses that “each eagle plume contained in a war bonnet is separately earned, frequently bestowed upon the proprietor through ceremonial, and represents a important event or acknowledged act of courage, leading, or self-sacrifice.” Much less, powerful, well-thought-of American Indian work forces with a history of heroism who are leaders in their Tribal community specifically wear war bonnets. In other words, the lone people who should be have oning war bonnets are heads or good well-thought-of warriors, such as Tatanka Iyotanka or Chief Sitting Bull of the Hunkpapa Lakota non these alleged world stars such as Chloe Kardashian, or the dad star Ke $ hour angle. It’s sad and hapless that such an inconsiderate show would be similar to the erosion of a war bonnet by person who hasn’t earned it. ( Hopkins )

Because many people have such a limited cognition of Indians, Native Americans are arguably, among the most misunderstood cultural groups in the United States. Native Americans are besides among the most stray groups. What people know is limited by their beginnings of information and, unluckily, much of the information about Indians is derived from popular civilization. Stereotyping is a hapless replacement for acquiring to cognize persons at a more intimate, meaningful degree. By trusting on stereotypes to depict Native Americans, whites come to believe that Indians are rummies, acquire free money from the authorities, and are made wealthy from casino gross. Or they may believe that Indians are at one with nature, profoundly spiritual, and wise in the ways of spiritualty.

Indeed, American mainstream media have ever tended to falsify Native American images. In a research conducted by Liu & A ; Zhang on the representation of Native Americans in pop civilization, “the movie Dances with Wolfs ; the wireless and Television Western, The Lone Ranger ; and the novel, by Fenimore Cooper, The Last of the Mohicans, are merely a smattering of Television shows ad films that present negative or romanticized images of American Indians, either awful or barbarous, or subservient and short, but all disappearing.” For case, the fancied Indian images on Television and in the Hollywood movies influence the individuality formation of single Native Americans. Consequently, Hollywood and Television have created simulated Indians and hold played and replayed these images so many times that the Indian viewing audiences take them as existent. These romantic and stoic characters barely speak in the movies ; nor do they acquire heard. Particularly, Liu & A ; Zhang point out the disagreements that in Hollywood movies and Television dramas, Indians are paid to decease, to fall off the Equus caballus, to corroborate the “Vanishing Baronial Savage” stereotype, so terminations are of import. Further propagating that these stereotyped images can be seen in the “westerns” films and even in some sketchs such as Peter Pan.

Furthermore, other stereotyped images showed them with painted faces smoking peace pipes, dancing around a totem pole ( at times with a confined tied to it ) , directing up fume signals, have oning feathered caput pieces, scalping the caputs of their enemies and invariably intoning the word “um” promotes a detrimental misconception and negative illations towards Native Americans. With respects to favoritism, when the extremely popular Twilight series received the Hollywood intervention, Taylor Lautner played the Native American character Jacob Black and his casting became steeped in contention. As Dow points out that “Lautner’s presence seemed out of sync with Hollywood’s recent pro-Indian stance. Lautner claimed to hold discovered his Indian lineage after being dramatis personae. Actions like this show movie producers’ hesitancy to engage an histrion in malice of the character’s ethnicity. Rick Mora, an histrion who resides in California, who plays a Native American in Twilight disagrees with the casting of Taylor: “There is plentifulness of Native endowment in town ( Hollywood ) to play that role.”

Furthermore, she yields that the film could be “applauded for stand foring Natives as more than merely a deceasing race, alternatively looking onscreen as people with their ain alone personalities.” For some younger viewing audiences this may be their first contact with Native American civilization, so admiting Indians as Americans on screen was an accomplishment on the portion of Hollywood. In add-on, the summer release of X-men Beginnings: Michigander in 2009 and the extremely popular character Silver Fox made her first onscreen visual aspect in the film series. In the original cartoon strips, Silver Fox is described as a Native Canadian Black Foot. The character is to be played by Caucasic actress Lynn Collins, and the determination to project a white actress has upset many fans of the cartoon strips. Hollywood manufacturers have besides decided to alter her name to the more American-sounding Kayla Silverfox. Clearly, non merely does Hollywood still find it hard to include a Native American in a blockbuster, but besides they even refuse to go forth the traditional cultural names integral. ( Dow ) Whereas names, images, and mascots that symbolize Native Americans are used extensively in the United States, peculiarly in athleticss and advertisement.

In athleticss there are the Washington Redskins football squad, the Atlanta Braves and Cleveland Indians baseball squads, and the Chicago Blackhawks hockey squad. Fans of the Atlanta Braves use the “tomahawk chop” accompanied by a chant to intimidate sing squads, while the Cleveland Indians use the mascot Chief Wahoo and the University of Illinois uses the mascot Chief Illiniwek. As a consequence, Native Americans across the state have been protesting the usage of their symbols and heritage in athleticss spheres for over a decennary. Most peculiar in the kingdom of professional athleticss, these protests have non generated important alterations in attitudes and patterns. As an illustration, Hatfield designates that Sons used by the Washington football squad and the Cleveland and Atlanta baseball squads are violative for many grounds, as are the logos once used by Dartmouth College and the University of Illinois. ( They are no longer used because the NCAA banned squads with racialist names and mascots from post-season drama. )

He implies that these Sons appropriate the individualities of Native Americans, many of whose linguistic communications and civilizations have been destroyed by Euro-Americans. They take sacred spiritual symbols from Native American civilizations – eagle plumes, face pigment, and peace pipes – minimize them, and work them for the commercial and amusement intents of Americans. And they perpetuate outdated, take downing stereotypes of Native Americans that make it hard for Native Americans to stand for themselves as portion of modern-day American society.Be that as it may, these Sons cut down Native Americans to barbarians, to defeated enemies who have been “erased” from today’s universe. Indian mascots objectify and commercialize Native Americans and their civilizations. Cigar shop Indians were used as advertizements to sell baccy. Urban Outfitters used Navajo forms to sell apparels, at least until attorneies stand foring the Navajo Nation filed suit against them and won an injunction coercing them to halt. ( Hatfield ) Other monikers of professional and college squads, such as Indians, Braves, Chiefs, and Seminoles may non in themselves be violative. However, the portraiture of these words is frequently really take downing.

For illustration, the 1995 World Series, the Cleveland Indians and the Atlanta Braves, with Chief Wahoo as the mascot for the Cleveland squad and the “tomahawk chop” exemplified by fans of the Atlanta squad, portrayed Native Americans in an highly corrupting mode. Suzan Shown Harjo, Director of the Morning Star Institute, says that this portraiture of Native Americans is “racist, derogative, take downing, dyslogistic, violative and nescient at best.” On the other manus, Dr. Cornel Pewewardy, a sing bookman in the Department of Education at Cameron University, has written extensively about the battle of unlearning ‘Indian Stereotypes’ for both Native Americans and non-Native Americans as learned from the take downing public portraiture of the American Indian through mascots, the film, Pocahontas, and the “tomahawk chop.” Bing that there are 62 high schools that use the name Redskins, the term has vanished from the collegiate landscape. Harmonizing to Capital News Service, “the last two colleges that used Redskins changed the name in the late ninetiess. Miami University of Ohio changed from the Redskins to RedHawks in 1997 and the Southern Nazarene Crimson Storm dropped the name in 1999. If the two universities had non changed their name by 2006, they would hold been unable to play in the postseason under a NCAA policy adopted in 2005 that bans the usage of Native

American mascots by athleticss squads during its tournaments.” The postseason prohibition convinced colleges with mascots like Braves, Indians and Savages to go the Red Wolves, War Hawks, Mustangs or Savage Storm. In position of the fact, the CNS denotes that the policy made an exclusion for squads that have the consent of local Native American folks like the Florida State University Seminoles. At the high school degree, there is no individual national athleticss organisation like the NCAA to coerce schools to abandon Native American mascots. But functionaries in a turning figure of provinces are taking similar stairss as the NCAA to coerce schools to alter. Wisconsin passed in 2010 the nation’s foremost province jurisprudence censoring public schools from utilizing Native American names, mascots and Sons. It left exclusions for schools that had the blessing of local Native American folk. In 2012, the Oregon State Board of Education issued a opinion censoring all Native American squad names, mascots and Sons. Affected schools must follow by 2017 or hazard losing province support.

Alternatively, harmonizing to Munson, “Indian” Son and monikers create, support and maintain stereotypes of a race of people. She asserts that when one or many of society’s establishments support such cultural maltreatment, it constitutes institutional racism. Further, the Son, along with other social maltreatments and stereotypes separate, marginalise, confuse, intimidate and injury Native American kids. They create barriers to their larning throughout their school experience. Additionally, the logos Teach non-Native American kids that it’s all right to take part in culturally opprobrious behaviour. Children spend a great trade of their clip in school, and schools have a important impact on their emotional, religious, physical and rational development. Equally long as such Sons remain, both Native American and non-Native American kids are larning to digest racism in our school. Understanding the history of Native Americans is of import to understanding why this is such a controversial subject.

The Native American community for 50 old ages has worked to ostracize images and names like Chief Wahoo, Washington Redskins, Kansas City Chiefs and the Atlanta Braves. It is of import to remind people of the cognizant usage of the symbols’ resemblance to other historic, racist images of the yesteryear. She adds that Native Americans struggled to last in rough state of affairss. The support of these mascots merely brings back memories of their ascendants and the agony and hurting they went through for their kids and grandchildren. The argument is about more than athleticss squads and what they call themselves ; it is about how Americans treat one another. It is about the regard that different cultural groups have for those different than themselves in footings of history, physical features, values, and most significantly, emotions. ( Munson )

In kernel, I have came to the decision that the Washington Redskins were originally known as the Newark Tornadoes and so the Boston Braves. Most histories can hold that squad proprietor George Preston Marshall changed the franchise name from the Boston Braves to the Boston Redskins in 1933 to acknowledge so manager, William “Lone Star” Dietz. Dietz, who claimed half-German, half-Sioux background, embraced what he perceived to be a Native American heritage. So, since many Native Americans are outraged about the symbolisation of Native Americans in athleticss and advertisement, and since society would non digest tantamount symbols of other minorities, it is clear that Native Americans are discriminated against, irrespective of how others may experience about the matter–and that their civil rights are violated by such racial favoritism. These are of import grounds for eliminating the usage of Native American names in athleticss, advertisement, and elsewhere.

Consequently, Native American organisations such as the National Congress of American Indians ( NCAI ) are doing a strong push through legal action in a command to coerce the Washington Redskins to alter their name. Most noteworthy of these instances are Pro Football vs. Harjo and Blackhorse v. Pro-Football, Inc. that have made strong attempts in the battle against the favoritism of Native Americans.

Plants Cited

Hatfield, Dolph L. “The Stereotyping of Native Americans.” The Humanist Sept. 2000: 43. Opposing Point of views In Context. Web. 15 July 2013.

Washington, d.c.—members of Congress urge snyder and the national football conference to alter the Washington team’s name. ( 2013, May 28 ) . Retrieved from hypertext transfer protocol: //www.house.gov/apps/list/press/as00_faleomavaega/eniredskins.html

Miller, Jackson B. “Indians, Braves, And Redskins: A Performative Struggle
For Control Of An Image.” Quarterly Journal Of Speech 85.2 ( 1999 ) : 188. Academic Search Premier. Web. 15 July 2013.

Soong, Kelyn. “The Other Redskins.” . Capital News Service. Web. 15 Jul 2013. .

Koch, Ronald P. Dress Clothing of the Plains Indians. University of Oklahoma Press, 1977. Examination of the design and building of Plains Indian formal … www.minnesotahumanities.org/Teachers/3-04plains.htm

Hopkins, Ruth. “Indian State Today Media Network.”Tribalism as Pop Culture Phenomenon and the Perpetuation of Offensive American Indian Stereotypes. N.p. , 19 Aug 2011. Web. 14 Jul 2013. .

Liu, Kedong, and Hui Zhang. Self- and Counter-Representations of Native Americans: Stereotyped Images of and New Images by Native Americans in Popular Media. Harbin Institute of Technology, China, n.d. Web. 15 Jul 2013. .

Dow, Madeline. “Race, Gender, and Mass Media Blog.”Native American Portrayal in Cinema. N.p. , 06 Nov 2012. Web. 14 Jul. 2013. .

Munson, Barabara. Common Themes and Questions About the Use of “Indian” Logos. N.p. , n.d. Web. 14 Jul 2013. .

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