Dan Snyder and his OAF: A Trick Play That Is Fooling No One
By now, media professionals and social-media activists have had a day and a half to digest the four-page letter Dan Snyder issued late Monday. American Indians who've campaigned against the name of the NFL franchise Dan Snyder owns -- the Redskins -- are understandably greeting the Washington Redskins Original Americans Fund as a cynical effort to deter criticism of the team's name.
Snyder had to expect that the National Congress of American Indians would protest the move and call on him to "change the name of the DC team and prove that the creation of this organization isn’t just a publicity stunt."
He had to expect that the Change the Mascot campaign spearheaded by Oneida Indian Nation Representative Ray Halbritter would object. Halbritter said in a statement that he is "hopeful that when [Snyder's] team finally stands on the right side of history and changes its name, he will honor the commitments to Native Americans that he is making."
Snyder might even have expected to see Halbritter on TV, speaking with Lawrence O'Donnell, or perhaps Kevin Gover, National Museum of the American Indian, discussing the team's name on All In with Chris Hayes.
And if he is a Twitter guy (somehow we think he is not), Snyder could have expected the #NotYourMascot activists to call BS on his Foundation. They've been tweeting selfie photos with dollar bills taped across their mouths with the hashtag #Not4Sale
Snyder could have expected some people would be skeptical of or offended by his attempt to pacify some Natives with money to justify holding on to his team's racist slur of a nickname. But did he expect that anyone would believe he is doing the right thing, for the right reasons? If so, he miscalculated.
Judging by commentary in the mainstream media and sportswriting blogosphere, nobody was fooled. The formation of the Original Americans Fund (OAF, as it's being called) is a flea-flicker that didn't flick. A fumblerooski that turned out to be just a fumble. A Statue of Liberty that is waist-deep in sand.
Here's Keith Olbermann on the "OAF":
And that's not all. Click through to the next page to read 11 cutting comments from skeptical writers and bloggers.
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