Religious leaders speak out against “Redskins” name
Here's what over 60 faith leaders had to say to Dan Snyder and Roger Goodall about the Washington NFL team's name:
Dear Mr. Goodell and Mr. Snyder,
As faith leaders in our nation’s capital, we feel we must take a stand on an important moral issue at the forefront of local and national consciousness: the offensive and inappropriate name of Washington’s NFL team.
The derogatory term “redskin” offends many Native Americans and others in this country. This word, defined in the dictionary as a slur, should not be publicly marketed and celebrated in America, which is built on the ideals of respect and inclusion.
Words can cause great pain, even when there is no intention to offend or demean. In many cases, words and their meanings also evolve over time; just because something was acceptable 80 years ago does not make it so today.
Each of us, regardless of our religious tradition, gender, or the color of our skin, is created in the image of the Almighty. We should all strive to treat one another with dignity, respect and compassion, just as we would like to be treated ourselves.
D.C. political leaders, Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle, top sports figures, leading journalists and thinkers, and even the President of the United States have urged Washington’s football team to retire its offensive mascot.
As representatives of our faith communities, we believe that this is a moral issue and we therefore have an obligation to step forward to join the Change the Mascot movement.
We urge you to look within, and to consider the feelings of your fellow Americans who are hurt and offended by the continued use of this word. We pray that you will end the use of Washington’s harmful NFL mascot, and instead help lead our country down a path of inclusion and mutual respect.