The increasing debate and controversy over the Washington Redskins’ name will be on display when the team plays its first road game of the season Sunday in Green Bay.
Members of the Oneida Nation and others plan to protest just outside Lambeau Field’s Oneida Nation Gate, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
“The warrior image is not the image we want to be portrayed,” Brandon Stevens, an Oneida Nation elected official, told the newspaper. “We’ve moved past the time of Western encroachment and how the West was won, and that’s where all the images are taken from — when we were a valiant enemy.”
The Packers have declined to comment on the protest and Redskins owner Daniel Snyder has vowed to never change the name. On Thursday, Commissioner Roger Goodell was asked about it again and he seemed to take a different stance, telling 106.7 The Fan “if we are offending one person, we need to be listening and making sure that we’re doing the right things to try to address that.” On Friday, a Washington Post’s editorial took note of Goodell’s comment and noted “Mr. Snyder should be prepared for the controversy never to end. The clamor for change only grows with time.”
The Oneida Nation in New York and Wisconsin have actively campaigned for a change for years. On Sunday, members of the Wisconsin Indian Education Association’s Mascot and Logo Task Force are also expected to protest at Lambeau’s Oneida Nation Gate shortly before the 1 p.m. EDT kickoff.
This isn’t the first time the Redskins’ presence has drawn protests at Lambeau. There were signs outside the stadium at their last regular-season appearance, in 2007. The Oneida Nation, according to a spokeswoman for the tribe, told the Journal Sentinel that this isn’t an official protest. The Oneida Nation is a Packers sponsor and has the naming rights to an entrance to Lambeau.