For Newsweek/Daily Beast special correspondent Michael Tomasky, there's no debate about whether the Washington, D.C. NFL team's name is racist–of course it is. "Fail to the Redskins," Tomasky concludes his June 1 column "The Racist Redskins."
Following the news of 10 U.S. Congress members writing to Washington team owner Dan Snyder, urging him to change the club's name, Tomasky pens a passionate and thorough examination of the the D.C. franchise's history, including its less than stellar record regarding nonwhite peoples. The club was the last to integrate, not adding a Black player until 15 years after the league's ban on African Americans was lifted–and then doing so only after being forced by the government. And today, we're debating what he sees as a clearly racist team name.
“'Redskins'” lasts only because white people don’t know it’s offensive and don’t particularly care to stop and think about how and why it might be," writes Tomasky. "They don’t know that it refers to the scalps (and skulls and corpses) of Native Americans, butchered by bounty hunters and delivered by the wagon-full to collect their payments from local authorities who’d authorized the kills. This recent poll that 79 percent of Americans aren’t bothered by the team’s name doesn’t impress me. All it means is that 79 percent of Americans need a history lesson."
Read the entire "The Racist Redskins" column here. ICTMN invites you to share your thoughts on Tomasky's article by commenting below.