Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share
6 July 2020
Money drives Washington Redskins name change
In the 1976 classic All the President’s Men, Deep Throat becomes agitated with Bob Woodward (played by Robert Redford) over his lack of progress in investigating Watergate. “Follow the money,” Deep Throat says. And if you wonder why the NFL’s Washington Redskins are seriously considering a name change. Do the same. Follow the money, especially in Washington D.C.
Major sponsors of the team, including stadium sponsor FedEx, are calling for a name change. And major owner Dan Snyder’s investors in the team are doing the same. Snyder, who has long defended the name, is suddenly trapped on an island, like Robinson Crusoe surrounded by cannibals, captives and mutineers.
Public pressure certainly spurred the money guys into action. But make no doubt about it. The reason the Washington Redskins will be no longer is because otherwise Snyder goes broke.
“The coming Washington Redskins name change is the next logical step. And the money men realize that public perception is changing. There’s a lot about 2020 to dismay us. But this is a good thing. Even if it took money to do the talking.”
Time has come for the Washington Redskins to be named something else
I spent most of my young adult days rooting for the Washington Redskins. I loved George Allen, whose Over the Hill gang were as charismatic as they were effective. Even as they infuriated me. (Why Allen always chose Billy Kilmer over golden-armed Sonny Jurgensen was beyond me.)
But the name is indefensible, and has been for years. It’s akin to a pro sports team calling themselves Black Face. Or Yellow Men. If 2020 is teaching us anything it’s that most Americans are facing their long racial history. (Even most NASCAR fans support its Confederate Flag ban.)
The time has come. The Black Lives Matter protests and the police response have woken some of us up. (Others already knew.) It’s not an easy thing to face that some of the things we take for granted, never realizing what they may mean to others, are out of date and offensive. (As a Civil War buff, I initially gasped when Confederate statues were taken down. Now, I think they belong in the museum. Because they mean slavery and hate to many.)
The coming Washington Redskins name change is the next logical step. And the money men realize that public perception is changing. There’s a lot about 2020 to dismay us. But this is a good thing. Even if it took money to do the talking.
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