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Necessary Roughness

Necessary Roughness: The name Redskins is offensive, the name Chiefs is not

With the Redskins likely changing their nickname, people are wrongfully calling for the Chiefs to do the same.

The battle to change the Washington Redskins name has been ongoing for decades. The debate now has some new steam behind it due to the tragic death of George Floyd. Floyd’s death has brought racial issues and stereotypical names to the forefront of society, including the sports industry. Last week, the Redskins announced plans to review the team’s name and will most likely end up changing it by the start of the football season. With this new development, there will most certainly be some pressure to change the name of the Kansas City Chiefs. It is understandable for people to view the Redskins as offensive, but the word Chief should not be viewed that way.

First of all, The Chiefs were not even given that name due to any Native American tribe or organization. The name came when Lamar Hunt moved the team from Dallas to Kansas City. According to an article written by Rachel Coltz of Arrowhead Live, former Kansas City mayor Harold Roe Bartle insisted for the Dallas Texans to move to KC, and convinced the owner Lamar Hunt to name the team after Bartle’s nickname, “The Chief.” Bartle was given that nickname through his involvement as a Scout Executive for the Boy Scout Council in St. Joeseph and Kansas City.

Secondly, the term Chief is a noun that means, the head or leader of an organized body of people; the person highest in authority. There are many types of Chiefs: police chief, chief of staff, commander in chief. Do we have to change those names too? There is an actual motorcycle brand named Indian Chief. Do we have to stop making those? Did you know there is a website called chief.com that focuses on connecting and supporting women leaders in the workplace? Is their site offensive? Should we boycott their cause?

The point is that even though there is a big movement to correct every single racial injustice, there has to be a line drawn in the sand somewhere. If we keep going, we will find something offensive in every name, logo, or public monument. And then we’ll have nothing. Even if the team is named with Indian Chiefs in mind, does that make it offensive? A chief is a leader of a tribe and football players are leaders on the field. It is an honorable name that the players should be proud to have.

The term Redskins is a racial slur and should be changed. It is offensive just like the Cleveland Indian mascot Chief Wahoo is as well. But those names and logos promote prejudice towards Native Americans. The term Chiefs is not prejudiced. It is honorable. It is not meant to poke fun at any Native American or Native American tribe. That is where people need to take a step back and ask themselves, is this really offensive or are we just making this a big deal because that is the popular stance right now? My answer: it’s not offensive, keep it the way it is.

Besides, my dog’s name is Chief, and I don’t want to change it.

4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Michael Roca

    January 24, 2021 at 8:48 pm

    Arrowhead Stadium… arrowhead as a logo. It’s named for Indian chiefs.

  2. Michelle

    October 20, 2021 at 2:53 am

    Look, im actually native American. FULL NATIVE AT THAT. Alof of ppl wtiting on this topic r big fans or not native or even black. The fact the person writing this was catching such an attitude wile writing this the anger was obvious. Ive seen other topics on this from ppl who were way more professional and didnt act this way wile writing. “Do we have to change this too?” Smh. No just the racial bs but the attitude is a red flag of a typical racist incapable of understanding wat its like 2 be native/black or sum1 of color. When yall write on this stuff plz be professional. We dont care how mad u r that u have 2 say “besides my dogs name is chief and im not changing it” really? Its not just a “popular stance” u can call it wat u want actually but natives have been oppressed/suppressed 4 so long combined w/ social media it was bound 2 happen of natives having a little more of voice finally. Wat did u expect? Natives r just now getting a lil more recognition barely & we’d have WAY MORE voices & power along time ago if we werent dam near extinct. If ur not racist against black folks then u shouldn’t be with natives either but if u r then ur really aren’t a kind-hearted as u think. Its all about equality, compassion & understanding w/ wat us ppl of color have gone thru/dealt with AND still deal with. We all gotta work on this plz AT LEAST just be more professional next time writing about natives/ppl of color.

  3. Dale Johnson

    September 8, 2023 at 4:27 pm

    Let’s forget all the Indians, no more chiefs, no more redskins, no more braves. Let’s just forget all their struggles, the good ones, the bad ones, the whole history that I was brought up learning, asking questions about because of the name of some of my favorite teams, local, professional, TV, school mascots, Pee-wee leagues. Just forget history like they are doing in the schools and government, no one should be allowed to celebrate their history, their lineage. This world has gone to hell in a hand basket, it’s so sad. I could go on for ever… anyway, let’s just forget about everybody’s history, the devil is smiling.

  4. Mike

    October 12, 2023 at 8:19 pm

    Give me a break. I get this guy gets frustrated when political correctness intersects with his sports team, but come on. He can do better than that. How is it the Chiefs honor natives but the Redskins, Braves, Indians, etc disparage them. He said this but did not cite his reasoning.

    I find the tomahawk chop more offensive to natives than any name. It OPENLY MOCKS natives. I don’t care either way, but keep it consistent. I get it. I’m a REDSKINS fan and still am. Their logo was actually created by a native but that’s irrelevant as it’s outweighed by political “correctness”

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