Change the Name Campaign

D.C. Fans Support Changing Offensive 'Redskins' Name


The results are in: 63 percent of Washington, D.C. residents said that they would approve if TV broadcasters stopped using the name Redskins.

Initiated by the Let’s Change the Name campaign, the survey sought to refute the focus group results that Dan Snyder, the team’s owner, touted in June. That survey, conducted by Frank Luntz, a premier Republican messaging strategist and NFL consultant (did not officially release the results) showed that fans did not find the name offensive.

The survey, which was conducted through the public polling company Survey Monkey, was distributed randomly to a pool of 100 Washingtonians from all ages groups, races and education levels.

The respondents were asked 9 questions. Three of them related specifically to Snyder: “If you were told the name of the Washington football team is insulting to a specific racial or ethnic group, would you encourage the owner to change it?; “If the owner of the team, changed its name, would you be as likely to purchase memorabilia bearing the team name or colors?”; And “If the owner of the team changed its name, would you still watch as many of the games?”

The results: 45 percent answered “Yes” to the first question; 61 percent said they would still buy memorabilia with the team’s new name; 84 percent would still watch as many games as they currently do if the owner changed the team’s name.

In a news release, Reed Hundt, the former FCC Chairman, and member of the campaign cited the word as “hateful speech” and urged the current FCC Chairman to convene an open meeting of voluntary media to discuss how they could avoid using the name. “This result shows that by any name, the team would still remain the affections of loyal fans, among whom I have counted myself for more that a half-century,” Hundt said.

Snyder has said that he would “never” change the team’s name.  And an earlier Associated Press poll of 1,004 adults conducted in April showed that 79 percent of respondents favored the team keeping their name. Despite the poll, media outlets, business leaders, and journalists have said that they would boycott using the team’s name.

The survey also asked about new names for the teams. It polled results for the “Washington Senators” and the “Skins” among other names. The results for those inquiries can be found here.

“These results show that public opinion is shifting decisively in favor of wanting media outlets to stop using a name for the Washington football team that is deemed offensive by Native Americans,” Hundt said. 

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Gregory Willis's picture
Gregory Willis
Submitted by Gregory Willis on
Don't bother going after Union High School in Tulsa, OK, right in the heart of Indian Country. Why don't you worry about drugs, poverty, and the fact that so many pregnant Indian woman appears to be adopting her baby out of the tribe so that the cycle can be broken? Then the name of a football team can be a concern. Learn about priorities!!

Lee Corey
Lee Corey
Submitted by Lee Corey on
This is not journalism, this level of biased information is propaganda straight out of the McCarthy era. The sample size for the poll is laughably inadequate and the poll questions are incredibly leading in nature. Output like this would have received an F in an intro to market research class as it fails at the most basic polling standards. Anyone who cites this"research" as a source is in serious jeopardy of losing any and all credibility.

Christian 's picture
Submitted by Christian on
Your article is pure trash.... how is asking leading and hypothetical questions to a group of 100 people even considered a "poll?" Utter garbage.

Butts Larue
Butts Larue
Submitted by Butts Larue on
I guess Warriors, the name Mr. Snyder already owns, is not up for consideration.

Butts Larue
Butts Larue
Submitted by Butts Larue on
Playing a little loosey goosey with those numbers, aren't you? You guys are getting to be as bad as Fox news.

Greg Menchefsky's picture
Greg Menchefsky
Submitted by Greg Menchefsky on
I think all of America is entrenched in the wrong problems. This is not a matter that needs as much attention as it gets, due to the sole fact that a small minority of people actually have a care in the world about the nickname of the Washington football "Redskins". I think it's a waste of time and more time should be spent worrying about the government shut down that now that does affect people. People love the name and it will not change, so quit whining and shut up about it. Native Americans are not causing drama over this so get over it you damn liberals!

AJ's picture
Submitted by AJ on
Many people forget that name 'Redskins' followed the team from Boston to DC, where they were named in honor of the Boston Tea Party: an historic event when American subjects began to revolt against British Tyranny. This is not simply a nod to our past, but is a symbol of our pride and strength as individuals, and as a nation. I am a loyal Redskins fan. I know many loyal, Native American, Redskin fans who believe it would be a crime to change the name. In a day and age where there is so much war, crime, poverty, and injustice around the world, this just seems like such a minuscule concern. HAIL TO THE REDSKINS!

Dennis A Szczesny's picture
Dennis A Szczesny
Submitted by Dennis A Szczesny on
Tongue in cheek; heart and brain suspended. How about "BLACKSKINS"