John McCain would ‘probably’ change Redskins name

(Via Facebook via @sportsyack)
(Via Facebook via @sportsyack)

The Donald Sterling episode continues to prompt national interviewers to ask renewed questions about the Redskins name. And — as with London Fletcher — this process has prompted national figures to make news with their responses.

The latest was Arizona Sen. John McCain, the former Republican presidential candidate. McCain discussed a variety of sports topics on “The Dan Patrick Show” this week; eventually, Patrick transitioned from the Sterling debate to a question about the Redskins.

“Well, I’m not sure I connect the two” issues, McCain said. “But I do believe that if I were [Daniel Snyder], I would sit down with Native American leaders. I’ve been involved in Indian affairs for a long time. We have a very large Native American population in our state. I’d call the Native American leaders together, and I’d sit down with them and I’d say, ‘Okay, what it is that you want, how do you want me to do that, here’s where I am.’

“If I were him, I would have a dialogue,” McCain continued. “And if they think it’s that offensive and terrible, I would certainly probably — I’m not the owner, and he has the rights of an owner — but frankly I would probably change the name.

“Myself, I’m not offended,” he told Patrick. “You’re not offended. But there are Native Americans that are.”

Patrick then asserted that Native Americans consider the word a slur.

“They do consider it a slur…” McCain agreed. “The sensitivity of Native Americans, particularly young ones who are now moving up the economic ladder, if they’re offended then their feelings need to taken into consideration.”

Finally Patrick asked McCain what he would do on this topic if he were NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.

“I’d sit down with Snyder and say look, have a dialogue, and then come back to me,” McCain said. “And if the Native Americans are not satisfied with that dialogue, then you ought to consider changing it. Whether he can force him or not, I don’t know what the ownership situation is.”

(First transcribed everywhere else. Via @ryanjkelly)

Dan Steinberg writes about all things DC sports at the DC Sports Bog.
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