They were previously known as the Washington Redskins, then adopted the name Washington Football Team, followed by the transition to the Washington Commanders. But there are some fans who are hoping to see a return to the Redskins name. A Native American organization, having gathered almost 100,000 signatures urging the Washington Commanders to reinstate the previous Redskins name and Cleveland Indians’ name.
The Native American Guardian’s Association (NAGA) stated in their petition concerning the Redskins name that it was not originally meant to be a derogatory or offensive term, but rather a symbol of respect and admiration. They argue that suddenly changing the name ignores the positive history associated with the Redskins name and unsettles the dedicated fans who have emotionally invested in the team over the years.
The ultimate name-change decision
While this petition has garnered significant support, the ultimate decision rests with the new ownership group and the stakeholders within the NFL to determine and endorse a new name. Currently, the Native American Guardians Association (NAGA) is urging Cleveland to reconsider its recent adoption of the Guardians name.
In a newly launched petition, NAGA board member Eunice Davidson stated, “With the incredible success of the recent petition campaign to #ReclaimTheRedskins, the Native American Guardians Association has heard from many of you.” She continued, “So today we are proud to be officially launching the petition to reclaim the Cleveland Indians!”
From a goal of 1,000 signatures to a new goal of 2,500.
The Cleveland Major League Baseball team held the name Indians for over a century, spanning from 1915 to 2021. Now, the petition has garnered 2,010 signatures, gradually moving towards its goal of 2,500.
Acknowledging potential resistance to the name change, NAGA addressed this concern in their petition statement. “We acknowledge the concerns surrounding cultural sensitivity and the need to foster inclusivity,” they stated. “However, we firmly believe that there are alternative ways to honor and respect Native American heritage without erasing it.”
They expressed that by reclaiming the Redskins name, there is an opportunity to engage in meaningful discussions, educational initiatives, and collaborations with Native American communities.
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