After years of debate between Native American tribes, executives, and sports fans, the Washington Redskins have officially announced its controversial name and logo will be retired and a new set of designs for the football team are in the works — the aim is to honor the United States military and Native Americans.
“Today, we are announcing we will be retiring the Redskins name and logo upon completion of this review,” according to the press release.
The Navajo Nation said the old logo was “racist” and “disparaging” and they welcomed the change.
“For generations, this team name and logo has misrepresented the true history and events that define the term ‘redskins,” the Navajo Nation said.
While giving no details of the new name, Redskins Head Coach Ron Rivera said in a July 4 interview that he is hoping to honor the United States military in the new name, while being respectful to Native Americans.
Rivera is the son of a veteran and grew up traveling to different military bases around the world.
Some proposed names on Twitter and other sites are the Washington Warriors, the Washington Code Talkers, and the Washington Red Tails.
The Code Talkers proposal is from the Navajo Nation and honors Navajo bilingual speakers who served in World War Two in the Pacific theatre. Their ability to serve as communication assets for the US helped ensure a victory against Japan.
The Red Tails proposal honors the Tuskegee Airmen from World War Two — the first African American and Caribbean military aviators in the US military. The planes of the airmen had red tails, giving them the nickname.
Online betting and reports show Red Tails as the leading contender to replace the now-former controversial Native American name.
The announcement is expected in the coming days.
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Boston Celtics Player Legally Changing Name to ‘Enes Kanter Freedom’ to Celebrate U.S. Citizenship
Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter is celebrating becoming a U.S. citizen in an incredible way. The 29-year-old athlete from Turkey is having his citizenship oath ceremony Monday, and will legally change his name to Enes Kanter Freedom.
Kanter is an outspoken human rights advocate who had his Turkish passport revoked in 2017 after he criticized Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Mediaite reports “he has also criticized NBA stars Michael Jordan and LeBron James for not doing enough to help the Black community and not speaking out against exploitative labor practices in China respectively.”
Celtics head coach Ime Udoka told the Boston Globe the team is “all for” the player’s name change. Kanter’s manager says the player will complete his legal name change to have Kanter become his middle name and Freedom be his new last name at Monday’s ceremony.
“We congratulated him as a group for getting his American citizenship last week,” Udoka said. “That’s who Enes is, we’re proud of him. Enes is who he is. He’s passionate about his stances and the name change; you look at [Ron] Artest [who changed his name to Metta Sandiford-Artest in the middle of the COVID-19 outbreak] and guys that have done it in the past. It’s something he wants to express and we’re all for it.”
Kanter has already changed his official Twitter account to Enes Kanter FREEDOM with his new last name in all caps. Freedom made waves when he tweeted the following on November 18: Money over Morals for the ‘King’. Sad & disgusting how these athletes pretend they care about social justice. They really do ‘shut up & dribble’ when Big Boss [inserted Chinese flag] says so. Did you educate yourself about the slave labor that made your shoes or is that not part of your research?”
The tweet included photos of basketball shoes he wore painted with human rights depictions and phrases such as “hey still researching and getting educated?” as well as “I am informed and educated on the situation.”
The statement is with regard to his criticism of LeBron James’ partnership with Nike. “Nike remains one of the NBA’s biggest sponsors as both organizations feed off their partnerships with China” reports Mediaite. Kanter Freedom also made an offer to take Michael Jordan and Nike co-founder Phil Knight to China in order for the men to “visit these slave labor camps and you can see it with your own eyes.”
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