Slate will no longer call Washington football team ‘Redskins’

Slate | DCist

Here’s a quick thought experiment,” Slate Editor David Plotz writes. “Would any team, naming itself today, choose ‘Redskins’ or adopt the team’s Indian-head logo? Of course it wouldn’t.”

The team’s nickname is “not an open-and-shut outrage like the still-used nickname ‘Savages,’” Plotz writes, but “it’s extremely tacky and dated—like an old aunt who still talks about ‘colored people’ or limps her wrist to suggest someone’s gay.”

To be clear, though we’re striking the word from our vocabulary, we will not bowdlerize quotes—if a public official utters the nickname in a newsworthy speech, we will not strike the word Redskins.

As Plotz points out, other media outlets shun the name. The Washington City Paper — where I used to work and which Redskins owner Dan Snyder once sued over an article he hadn’t read — announced last October it would call the team the “Pigskins.” DCist gave it up in February.

Beyond the period at the end of this sentence, I intend never to use the word redskin again,” The Buffalo News’ Tim Graham wrote in January. The Kansas City Star “doesn’t normally” use the name: “I remain unconvinced by every argument I’ve ever heard that the name is not a racial epithet, plain and simple,” the paper’s public editor, Derek Donovan wrote last September.

After Slate’s piece went out, The New Republic announced it, too, would change its stylebook and stop referring to the team by its official nickname.

Snyder has said the team will never change its name, suggesting reporters could “use caps” on the word ‘never.’”

Coming up with alternate names for the team is something of a tradition among D.C.-area types: Plotz suggests the Washington Griffins, which would pay tribute both to the team’s quarterback and “allow the team to keep the feathers and the ferocity.”

My favorite idea, though, comes from Huffington Post reporter Arthur Delaney, who notes he grew up near RFK Stadium, the Redskins’ former home.

“This team should be called the Washington Department of Football,” he writes Poynter in an Instant Message. “At least two former Skins players were known as secretaries of defense, including Dexter Manley and David Deacon Jones. So clearly, this is a name that would honor local tradition much better than ‘Redskins’ does.” Go Doffs!

Related: Rejecting Racism: The Native Factor

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  • moelarryandjesus

    You would lose that bet. Now run down to the police station and report yourself as a Level 3 offender.

  • moelarryandjesus

    What would you bet? Some of the cookies from your hollow tree? Your collection of lynching postcards? No thanks.

  • moelarryandjesus

    Name these “dozens of tribes,” you racist moron. And then kindly die in a fire, okay?

    I love it when thoughtless yahoos like you are offended by my name. By the way, you look like a Keebler elf.

  • daveinboca

    Your NAMBLA membership dues are in the mail, I’ll bet….

  • daveinboca

    I’ll bet you’d know, perv…..

  • daveinboca

    Hey, fool. Dozens of Indian tribes have been vetted and are okay with “Redskins.” Only a few rabble-rousers like Russell Means and other zany freaks complain about the nickname. And why don’t you call yourself “moelarryandmohammed?” See how long you keep your head from getting cut off by crazy savages.

    Chicken squat losers like you are a dime a dozen.

  • daveinboca

    How about the Atlanta Braves and the Cleveland Indians? Even “Vikings” means Scandanavian pirates. Why don’t the descendants of Norsemen whine and cry about the use of that name? Would any team be silly enough to call themselves the “Native Americans?” PC BS strutting across left-wing agitprop vehicles like Salon and Slate is risible.

  • JimTreacher

    I’m sure I don’t care.

  • moelarryandjesus

    I’m sure you’re wrong.

  • JimTreacher


  • moelarryandjesus

    Isn’t Jim Treacher the name of a famous necrophile?

  • JimTreacher

    No, you’re the stupid frownie-face.

    Redskins. Redskins, redskins, redskins.

  • moelarryandjesus

    You wouldn’t get it. You’re an extreme right-winger and thus you’re a humor eunuch.

  • sargeh

    I guess I “lack intelligence.” Explain the humor.

  • moelarryandjesus

    Nope, they wouldn’t. Are you actually stupid enough to equate the two?

    I hope you’re not.

  • moelarryandjesus

    Good for us!

  • cowsharky

    Are you my long-lost twin? ‘Cuz I call them the same exact thing.

  • Ron Hayes

    Would any civil rights organization, naming itself today, choose “National Association for the Advancement of Colored People”…?

  • moelarryandjesus

    Only to those who lack intelligence and a sense of humor.

  • JimTreacher

    Says the guy whose screen name is a religious slur…

  • moelarryandjesus

    I never call them anything but the Washington Racialslurs, and never will until they drop the racial slur.