Editor’s note: In for a penny in for a pound. Or 14 tons. Whatever. The amazing thing is, the world will apparently never run out of celebrities to ask about the Redskins name. There are so many celebrities. Never realized how many. — DS
With several former Redskins – London Fletcher, Jason Taylor, Tre Johnson, Art Monk, Champ Bailey — speaking out against the Redskins name, it’s now open season for asking former Redskins players about that issue. The latest: Russ Grimm, who joined Jeff Bostic, Joe Theismann and Chris Cooley as former players strongly supporting name.
“You know what, overall I think — politically, society-wise, whatever — the name’s been around long enough,” Grimm told Alex Marvez and Phil Savage on SiriusXM NFL Radio. “It hasn’t offended anybody for a long time. I’ve never heard of anybody calling [someone] Redskins where it’s a derogatory name.
“So that being said, do you want to get technical about it?” Grimm went on. “I saw the article with Champ Bailey and stuff like that. Is it that far? No. Do I think they should change it? No. I don’t think they should change it. I don’t think anything has been part of that team — that team, the name or the concept or whatever they’re for — does not offend any American Indians. I’m sorry. I mean, that’s just my say on it.
“And I know some people get upset with that,” Grimm said. “But when you think about it, do you hear anybody going ‘Oh, Redskin, Redskin, Redskin?’ It’s not a derogatory name. Now if some people think it is, ok, fine, I can see their point with that. I mean, there’s no question there. But I don’t think they’re going to change it. It’s a proud nickname. It comes up — it came up when I was playing in the ’80s — and it comes up every couple years. I understand where people think it’s derogatory or whatever, but I don’t think it’s derogatory. I don’t think that Redskins name is trying to put down anybody. So hey, I’m gonna stay with it. I was a Redskin. I’m gonna stay with it.”
Meanwhile, Mike Tyson came out against the name. This was during a recent appearance at Turning Stone Casino, which is owned and operated by the Oneida tribe that has led much of the opposition to the name in recent months.
“What’s the difference between the Washington Redskins and the Washington Black Bucks or Black Coons?” Tyson asked his interviewer. “What’s the difference between that?”
“There isn’t,” the interviewer said.
“Exactly,” Tyson said, “exactly. It’s just common sense. The Washington Redskins. That’s what the Army in the 19th century called them: Redskins. The cavalry called them Redskins, a derogatory term. Redskins. Even your kids know that’s derogatory.”
Meanwhile, MSN ran a poll about the team name on its front page. Hundreds of thousands of people voted. The results were similar to those we’ve seen in scientific polls in recent years. This was as of Thursday evening.
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