Fox Sports Screen Grab
World Series: Cubs Beat Indians 8-7. The infamous “Curse of Sockalexis,” a tribute to the late Russell Means, who said the Indians would never win a World Series until they changed their name and logo - still stands.

ASK N NDN: Sockalexis Curse: Cleveland Indians Lose World Series

Vincent Schilling

Congratulations to the Chicago Cubs, who just beat the 108-year-old dry spell by winning the World Series against the Cleveland Indians 8-7. The infamous “Curse of Sockalexis,” a tribute to the late Russell Means, who said the Indians would never win a World Series until they changed their name and logo - still stands.

As the Native American sports editor of ICTMN, I did not watch a single game of the World Series prior to last night’s Game 7 due to the fact that Cleveland’s Chief Wahoo logo is too much to bear. As I watched Game 7, won by the Cubs, I felt a range of emotions, but primarily embarrassment and regret.

I thought of Nataanii Means, the talented hip-hop artist and son of Russell Means who has been at the front lines of #NoDAPL, standing with so many to protect our water.

See Related: Curse of Sockalexis, Russell Means Cast Shadow on Cleveland Indians

“What’s the harm?” some might ask about Chief Wahoo. Well, how many children watched the game - and accepted that racist logo as simply a sports logo, without any thought about its disregard for Native culture?

At this point, I am aware that MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said that though “logos are primarily a local matter,” he wanted to speak with the Indians about Chief Wahoo, and he was planning a meeting with Indians CEO Paul Dolan after the World Series.

Commissioner Rob Manfred at a news conference before Game 2 of the World Series on Wednesday. (Gene J. Puskar, Associated Press)

As I sat at my computer and saw in the first inning as Dexter Fowler of the Cubs hit a lead-off home run - I thought of Sockalexis, who was treated so horribly by the news when he played for the Cleveland Spiders, he was called a savage, a wooden indian and more horrible things in the media.

And I thought of Sockalexis when Cubs catcher David Ross became the oldest player, at 39, to hit a homerun in a World Series. And yes, I became nervous when the Indians tied the game late at 6-6.

And yes, I was glad when the Cubs won in the 10th.

And yes, I was filled with remorse for having supported the World Series by watching last night. I realize now how much more powerful my statement as a Native sports editor could have been had I refused to watch, but my curiosity about whether the “Curse of Sockalexis” would hold true got the best of me.

I didn’t have to watch, I could have looked at Twitter and found out in two seconds what was happening in Cleveland.

Lesson learned. I will never again watch a game involving any team with a Native logo.

And though I am glad that the ‘Curse of Sockalexis” still stands. I wish I hadn’t watched it.

Actions are stronger than words.  

Follow ICTMN’s Arts and Entertainment, Pow Wow’s and Sports Editor Vincent Schilling (Akwesasne Mohawk) on Twitter - @VinceSchilling

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mmcloughlin9's picture
Submitted by mmcloughlin9 on
I did not even watch Game 7, for fear of jinxing things. As hoped, Chicago did come from behind to win - a wonderful underdog story to start with; made the more poignant by the fact it was 108 years in coming -- and by the fact that racism 'struck out' at the World Series this year! I am Sunlight Dancing on the Water (aka Micheal T McLoughlin), and I am *very* glad to be alive!

hammertime's picture
Submitted by hammertime on
That was a pretty mean curse they laid on the Cleveland indians. A terrible way to lose after being ahead 3 games to one... .I sitll dont think they will ever change their logo... It was a very good series and a Very good game and I was very happy to see the cubs pull it out in the 10th inning... but very painful for the Cleveland indians.. With all the crappy politics and lies in the news, , it was nice to have something real to see and enjoy.