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Old 06-25-2014, 11:01 PM  
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Woman behind the Redskins name change says the Chiefs should be on guard

The fight took a monumental shift at a protest nine years at Arrowhead Stadium and it’s about to come full circle. No matter what you think of the issue, it will soon be ubiquitous in and around Kansas City’s greatest obsession other than barbecue.

The Chiefs are aware of it, and are preparing accordingly.


Back in 2005, a group calling itself Not In Our Honor protested before the Chiefs played Washington. The protesters were predominately American Indians, united in their anger over what they perceived as offensive stereotypes passed off as nicknames for sports teams. An older woman, Suzan Harjo, one of the leaders of the protest, met a younger woman named Amanda Blackhorse, then a student at Kansas.
They bonded over their passion for the issue, and that’s how the case known as Blackhorse et al v. Pro-Football Inc. came to be. Last week the plaintiffs prevailed when the United States Patent and Trademark Office canceled the trademarks of the Washington Redskins.


The case is under appeal, but you should know that the woman who took on and (at least for the moment) defeated the corporate entity that owns Washington’s NFL team would like to see the same type of case brought against the Chiefs.
As she says, the spark that started back in 2005 at Arrowhead has created a fire that will probably soon return.


“What happens there, it’s just insane the things they allow to go on,” Blackhorse says of the Chiefs and Arrowhead. “They are definitely in the group (of offensive teams), for sure.”


For now, the Chiefs are publicly silent on this. But they know the fight is likely coming, and they hope a few things work in their favor — most notably that it’s tough to compare their nickname with the one in Washington that is a dictionary-defined racial slur. Blackhorse’s group has also protested baseball’s Cleveland Indians, and that team has greatly scaled back its use of the cartoonish Chief Wahoo logo.


The Chiefs have similarly scaled back some of their more obvious plays on Indian stereotypes, and they hope they have some other advantages when the fight comes. The team is named after H. Roe Bartle, the mayor who was key in Kansas City landing the team from Dallas in 1962. Bartle’s nickname was “The Chief.”


The team stopped using a man dressed in traditional headgear as a mascot during pregame festivities many years ago. In the early 1990s, many of the Chiefs’ defensive players posed for a poster that today both looks absolutely ridiculous and would never be recreated.
The team does, however, play the tomahawk chop during games and welcomes fans in headgear and other stereotypes of Native American dress.


Those are some of the parts of the game day experience that Blackhorse calls “insane,” and why she expects a fight that’s gaining momentum and support nationally to come to Kansas City.


She knows that the vast majority of Chiefs fans will oppose her, but she also knows that the vast majority of fans in Washington opposed her, as well.


She says there is “no middle ground with this issue,” that once an ethnic group is used as a nickname for a sports team, the people in that ethic group lose control of their identity and humanity.


“I don’t want people to think I’m going around pointing fingers, like, ‘You’re a racist, you’re a racist, you’re a racist,’ ” she says. “That’s not the point. The point is we’re offended. You can love Native Americans to death. You can have admiration, love what we do, how we are, whatever, and still (hijack) our culture without understanding it that way.”


Wherever you stand on this issue, there is no denying that Blackhorse’s side is making progress. Teams are sensitive to and aware of perpetuating stereotypes so much more than in the past, in response to public sentiment.


The issue is further complicated by context, that this is a fight centered around Indians, who make up about 1 percent of the nation’s population and who, in Blackhorse’s words, “are invisible sometimes to people.”
That makes getting the message out a bit more difficult. A group of people that feels offended by widespread stereotyping isn’t big enough to get critical mass on its own.


That’s why Blackhorse says the movement needs the help of non-Indians, and part of why she’s so encouraged by developments in Congress and with the trademark case.


There is a lot of momentum here, which can be dangerous for teams like the Chiefs that will likely soon find themselves directly in the fight.
“I’m not sure there’s anything the (Chiefs) can do at this point other than look for another name,” Blackhorse says. “They could be the team that says, ‘You know what? We understand the issue and we don’t want to be Dan Snyder and fight this in court forever. We want to do the right thing and move forward and avoid this entire battle.’ I’m sure fans will be upset, but still, that’s doing the right thing.


“If they want to be sensitive to Native American people, that’s the thing to do.”

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Old 07-14-2014, 09:21 AM   #706
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Let me guess, she was 1/1,346ths Native American.
That would mean the only native in her was once during high school
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Old 07-14-2014, 09:57 AM   #707
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Originally Posted by KC native View Post
Let me guess, she was 1/1,346ths Native American.
Enough to get benefits by today's standards.
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Old 07-14-2014, 10:04 AM   #708
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Let me guess, she was 1/1,346ths Native American.
I didn't ask her that but I'm saying from the looks of her she had a little more Indian blood in her than that. Probably as much as any jackass fighting for the name change. And she was working so it didn't appear that she was just living of the tax payers dime.
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Old 07-14-2014, 10:10 AM   #709
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And she was working so it didn't appear that she was just living of the tax payers dime.
Was her name Star or Crystal
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Old 07-14-2014, 10:38 AM   #710
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Was her name Star or Crystal

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Old 07-14-2014, 10:52 AM   #711
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How long until Florida State is in the crosshairs?
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Old 07-14-2014, 10:54 AM   #712
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How long until Florida State is in the crosshairs?
I thought they asked permission from the onset?
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Old 07-14-2014, 08:40 PM   #713
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How long until Florida State is in the crosshairs?
Never. The Seminole Nation actively supports FSU. They advertise.
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Old 07-14-2014, 09:04 PM   #714
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How long until Florida State is in the crosshairs?
FSU and the Seminole tribe told the NCAA to go pound sand. I don't imagine they'll do anything different if the squaw goes down to Florida and starts with her bullshit there.
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Old 07-14-2014, 09:21 PM   #715
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FSU and the Seminole tribe told the NCAA to go pound sand. I don't imagine they'll do anything different if the squaw goes down to Florida and starts with her bullshit there.
The tribe in Florida. Supposedly Oklahoma seminoles aren't content.
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Old 07-14-2014, 09:30 PM   #716
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The tribe in Florida. Supposedly Oklahoma seminoles aren't content.
We were talking about FSU and the Florida Seminoles, so I don't give a **** what the Oklahoma Seminoles are feeling. Those idiots consider all Indian mascots to be racist, which tells you that they're not worth consulting on the issue.
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Old 08-07-2014, 06:34 AM   #717
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I had to put this in here today

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WASHINGTON - The University of Minnesota is working with the Minnesota Vikings in an effort to keep the Washington Redskins’ name from being used in “promotional and game date materials” during the NFL teams’ Nov. 2 game at the school’s stadium in Minneapolis, according to an Aug. 1 letter from university President Eric Kaler to U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum, D-Minn.

It is unclear to what degree the Vikings are collaborating in this process.

Kaler was responding to a June letter from McCollum to Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf — to which the university president was copied — urging the owner to condemn the Redskins’ team name. McCollum argued that Wilf needed to take a stand against “that hateful slur” because all of the NFL teams split the sales of their licensed merchandise equally.

“The time for debate has ended — the name of the Washington franchise is clearly an offensive racial slur,” McCollum wrote to Wilf. “I urge you, as an NFL team owner, to not remain silent on this matter any longer.”

Redskins spokesman Tony Wyllie said Wednesday night that the team disagrees with the school’s effort to bar the Redskins’ name for the game at TCF Bank Stadium, the University of Minnesota stadium. “We have met many Native Americans from Minnesota who agree with our position and feel we are using the term correctly and honorably,” he said.

Lester Bagley, the Vikings’ executive vice president of public affairs, said Wednesday night that the team is still deciding how it will handle the college’s request to eliminate the use of the Redskins’ name for the Nov. 2 game. He said Vikings and school officials met once on the issue, in late July at the university, but plan on further talks between now and November.

“We take the issue very seriously, but we’re just getting ready for our season and we’ve been very focused on training camp and the preseason, and to be honest, we don’t have a game plan for our Nov. 2 game versus Washington,” Bagley said.

Daniel Snyder, the Redskins’ owner, recently went on ESPN 980’s “The Drive” with former player Chris Cooley and defended the team name, and cited other professional sports teams with Native American names, such as the Atlanta Braves and the Kansas City Chiefs.

McCollum wrote the letter in the wake of the decision of the U.S. Patent and Trademark office to cancel the Redskins’ trademark registration. The ruling by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board marked an enormous victory for opponents of the team’s name, but the decision does not deprive the team from selling its T-shirts and paraphernalia.

McCollum alleged that the Redskins’ presence at the university’s stadium would violate the institution’s Board of Regents’ policy on affirmative action, diversity and equal opportunity. She also noted that the stadium was built with funding from the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux.

It was unclear whether the university decided to take its own actions based on McCollum’s encouragement. The university is hosting all of the Vikings’ home games while the NFL team awaits the construction of its new stadium. The Associated Press has reported that the Vikings will pay the university $250,000 for every game.

In his letter to McCollum, Kaler said the Redskins name is “offensive and should be replaced.” Kaler went on to say that the University of Minnesota is “working with the Vikings to make every effort to eliminate the use of Washington’s team name” on game day.

He added that the college and the Vikings are talking with the “American Indian community to ensure a peaceful, positive and safe event for fans while also providing space for protest and expression.”
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Old 08-07-2014, 07:54 AM   #718
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Old 08-07-2014, 09:35 AM   #719
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I think this is a great idea....

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At the risk of oversimplifying a complicated and sensitive issue, there’s a worthwhile example with the war drum used by the Chiefs at home games.

There’s a chance you haven’t given that drum a second thought. The Chiefs brought it back when “opening” the renovated stadium four years ago as part of a challenge from Donovan to reconnect with some old traditions. As it turned out, they found the actual drum used at Municipal Stadium. They’ve had celebrities like George Brett and Tom Watson bang the drum to get fans going on game day.

Well, the war drum represents something very different than crowd hype to a lot of American Indians. The Chiefs didn’t mean to offend anyone with this, of course. They just didn’t know. They could have used some guidance, and this is one of the points Learned made to Donovan and Chapin.

“I told Mark, ‘I could’ve helped you with this,’” Learned says.

Learned suggested the Chiefs go to a local tribe, with respect, and ask for a real drum to be made. Bring that drum to Arrowhead. Have a blessing. Show your fans this is something very sacred to Indians. Help them understand why you’re doing this. Have men from the tribe come in and play a real hymn and sing.

“I think a lot of Natives would embrace that, because you came to us and asked a good way of doing it and your fans would learn something,” Learned says. “We would like to teach about our culture. The Chiefs have the opportunity to teach this, and everybody wins. … The Chiefs are making money off Native American icons. So, yes, it’s a two-way street.”

There are no concrete plans about how this education would look, but Donovan says the team hopes to start rolling it out early this season. The best approach would start with a formal advisory council for the Chiefs made up of leaders from the American Indian community.

After that, the team could put on public programs to educate people about Indian culture, both at the game and out in the community. They could play public service announcements during the game, explaining the significance of things like the war drum. They could put up booths outside the gates, and go out into the parking lots before games to spread the word.

The team’s profile could even be used as a way to get into schools, which would be a win for both the Chiefs and the understanding of American Indian cultures.
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Old 08-07-2014, 09:43 AM   #720
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I had to put this in here today
Wow... never underestimate the extent of stupid, especially in Minnesota.
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