On the eve of the Super Bowl, the National Congress of American Indians has released an online commercial, the latest show of opposition to the Washington NFL franchise’s “Redskins” nickname.
In the two-minute video, images of American Indians are shown while a narrator lists the names they use to refer to themselves: proud, forgotten, Indian, Navajo, Blackfoot, survivor, Jim Thorpe, mother, father, underserved, among others.
“Native Americans call themselves many things,” the narrator says, adding: “The one thing they don’t?” as an image of the Redskins helmet is shown on the screen.
The video’s release comes after the Oneida Indian Nation met with human rights representatives of the United Nations in New York last week tto discuss the name.
“We discussed the hope that Washington’s team might take the concrete step of eliminating the continued usage of the R-word epithet as a sign of their commitment to opposing racism and discrimination, rather than continuing to profit from the offensive brand,” Oneida Nation representative Ray Halbritter told USA Today.
At a pre-Super Bowl news conference Friday, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell declined to answer a question that asked him if he would call Native Americans “Redskins” to their faces. Think Progress reported that Goodell said the team “has presented the name in a way that…has honored Native Americans.”
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