Martin Devlin: Washington Redskins name change the right decision

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Fri, 17 Jul 2020, 1:46PM

Martin Devlin: Washington Redskins name change the right decision

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Fri, 17 Jul 2020, 1:46PM

I am a Washington Redskins fan. Have been since aged 8.

And yes, like most, I've also long wished the name would be changed. But, unlike those desperate for change, demanding change, I wanted change but only because it has always been the right thing to do, i.e. change not because of public pressure, financial pressure from the team's biggest sponsors, threats implied or otherwise from the NFL, comments and opinion pieces however valid from whatever credible position held or not.

Everyone has something to say on this and it's obvious why.

The name is simply offensive. Me, I wear a Redskins cap most days and have done so filming this many times. Am I ashamed? No.

Should I be? No. Not that others may not think differently.

I'm a fan of the team. The NFL team from Washington DC that formerly played at RFK Stadium and is now based at FedEx Field. Yes I've travelled there to watch them play and sung with gusto the home town song called "Hail to the Redskins". There's a line in it that goes "braves on the warpath, fight for old DC".

Was I really thinking I was singing some old wild west fable, or maybe some historic pointer to a savage and evil past? No. It was just a song. Just a team song that fans sung - and so I did. But that will probably disappear now along with the logo, name and everything else associated with the native American Indian image. Why that symbolism was chosen in the first place is still a matter of debate, regardless of it's gone and had to go.

How far this now extends into all American sports franchises including college and high-school teams, who really knows? There's the Cleveland Indians, Kansas City Chiefs, Chicago Blackhawks & Atlanta Braves just to name a few.

Those debates right now are for those teams. All I know is my lot will be renamed and maybe even in time for the start of this season whenever it is.

And, it's a good thing. Yes would've been so much more satisfying had the owner done this for the right reasons but to quote Malcolm X "by any means necessary".

And this is one time where the end really does justify those "means".