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Frank Waln

7 Anti-R-Word Quotes From Native Voices

Simon Moya-Smith
8/23/14

The name-change debate has brought a diverse group of activists to the forefront, whether it be through social media, or more traditional platforms. Here are a few Native voices that should be amplified.

1. “I’d ask (Washington team owner Dan Snyder), ‘Would you dare call me a redskin, right here, to my face?’ ... “And I suspect that, no, he would not do that.” -Amanda Blackhorse, Diné, speaking to The Washington Post.

Amanda Blackhorse

2. “In addition [to the Annenberg survey], Dan Snyder keeps talking about the ‘hundreds’ of letters he’s received from Natives in support of the team, when I know there are thousands against the name and mascot.” Dr. Adrienne Keene, Cherokee, speaking to ICTMN.

Dr. Adrienne Keene via Twitter

3. “This business of being Cherokee, ‘I am a Cherokee princess,’ and all that you hear is a very old story to us.” ... “It’s kind of like the way we thought about the term, ‘redskins’ and all that for a long time as a team name; it’s just something people say and do because they’re kind of ignorant.” -Wes Studi, Cherokee, speaking to The Tribal Tribune.

Wes Studi (Associated Press)

4. “Native Americans cannot be bought.” ... “While we appreciate billionaire Dan Snyder’s belated and sudden interest in the centuries-old plight of Native Americans, no amount of money makes it acceptable to promote a derogatory racial slur.” -Jacqueline Pata, Raven/Sockeye Clan of the Tlingit Tribe and executive director of the National Congress of American Indians, speaking to Great Falls Tribune.

Jacqueline Pata

5. “We are stereotyped, we are marginalized, and our issues become obscure.” ... obscured by mascots. Everyone knows the mascots, they know the stereotypes, but they don’t know anything about us.” -Jacqueline Keeler, Navajo and Yankton Dakota, activist and writer, told MSNBC.

Jacqueline Keeler during an appearance on MSNBC.

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Michael Madrid's picture
Michael Madrid
Submitted by Michael Madrid on
I'm certainly NOT a celebrity and I'm certainly NOT KNOWN outside my small circle of friends, but I have taken it on the nose from NFL fans of the team in question in my YouTube debates. MY quote is, "We are NOT honored!"

stevef's picture
stevef
Submitted by stevef on
"One thing we NEVER call ourselves is Redskins." Except all over Indian Country ...including on the Indian Country Today web page. And on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=40SFqadRTQ0 To me this is sadly laughable. The big fight over THIS? Sad.

scd's picture
scd
Submitted by scd on
“I’d ask (Washington team owner Dan Snyder), ‘Would you dare call me a redskin, right here, to my face?’ I love this! Because, I have said, for those who think the term "Redskin" is not offensive...let's see. OK, lets do an experiment. For those of you including dan snyder who have no problem saying this, I challenge you to go to Pine Ridge Reservation in SD and walk down the street yelling "Redskin, I'm honoring you!" Or, go to South Central LA and walk down the street yelling "Nigger, I'm honoring you!" If you don't get your ass whipped or if you walk out alive...then case closed there is no offence! Just do it!

BobB427's picture
BobB427
Submitted by BobB427 on
If Geronimo, Black Elk, and Crazy Horse went to a Redskins game and saw 20,000 Redskin fans Standing and chanting We Want The Redskins to Win; THEY WOULD JOIN IN they would not sit in protest and they would not be insulted. True Indians are raised to be tolerant and understanding. We are also raise to follow the lead of our Chiefs and Elders. There are so many CRITICALLY IMPORTANT issues that face Indians today; to focus on the Redskins issue is to take time ,money and effort away from the Important issues. Now some jerks want the Chiefs to change their name? When does it stop; when ALL references to Indians are eliminated? Names are just names. Redskin is a description. Only Stick and stones are important. What are we teaching our children by focusing on the Redskins name. That a name is more important than the elimination of Indians from school textbooks? Get excited fired up about : correcting the History books or the return of Kennewick Man, or stopping States from Violating Indian Tribal Sovereignty or holding that sovereignty hostage. Indian kids need Sport teams with Indian names. And they need parents that are smart enough to realize and teach them what is and what is not an Important Indian issue!
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