Honda, Lofgren Demand Washington Change Team Name

A bill co-signed by two Silicon Valley lawmakers wants to strongarm the Washington Redskins into dropping the team’s racial slur mascot.

Two-dozen Democratic lawmakers have now signed their names to the bill, including Reps. Mike Honda (D-San Jose) and Zoe Lofgren (D-San Jose).

“Allowing trademark protection of this work is akin to the government approving its use,” Honda says. “Removing that trademark will send a clear message that this name is not acceptable.”

Team owner Dan Snyder has defended the nickname, saying it honors the past. But nearly every single Native American tribe has come out in opposition to its use, noting that the term “redskins” was often used as a bounty on the scalps of natives.

“It is unbelievable to me that, in the 21st century, a prominent NFL franchise is calling itself by a racial slur,” Honda said. “Team names should not be offensive to anyone.”

The proposed law would nix any federal trademarks and prevent the U.S Patent and Trademark Office from issuing new trademarks using the term “redskins” in reference to Native Americans.

Jennifer Wadsworth is a staff writer for San Jose Inside and Metro Newspaper. Email tips to [email protected] or follow her on Twitter at @jennwadsworth.

28 Comments

  1. I think this where the term “thin skinned” came from. Do you honestly think they called the team Redskins in order to be racist or puggerative? If you do, then you are smoking a pipe. Please stop the race baiting stuff .

  2. Mike, Zoe: how about a bill to strip MLB of it’s antitrust exemption?

  3. Funny seeing this bill sponsored by Mike Honda. He’s one of the biggest racists out there. Heck, he put a dot on his opponent’s forehead in an ad during the last election. He’s nothing but a hypocrite who is desperate for attention and to raise his national profile. He’s an embarrassment to Silicon Valley.

  4. > But nearly every single Native American tribe has come out in opposition to its use, . . .

    I don’t think this is true.

    Just as it ISN’T true that 97 percent of scientists think that global warming is caused by human activity.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/1489105/Leading-scientific-journals-are-censoring-debate-on-global-warming.html

    http://www.cfact.org/2005/05/04/dr-benny-peisers-letter-to-science-magazine-and-the-story-of-its-rejection/

    • Go to Facebook and check out the Native American Redskin Nation page & Native American Redskins Fan Pages….no its not true all NA are offended….we are actually offended by Amanda Blackhorse & Ray Halbritter spending millions on this when that money could go to reservations to build schools, bring clean water and homes….Ray has a personal agenda …..if he was making money off the Redskins there would be no issue….guess millions off NA Casinos is not enough….

  5. Slow day at the office, eh?

    The U.S. debt has passed the $18 Trillion mark, 46+ Million receive food stamps, 90+ Million have dropped out of the labor force so let’s demand the Redskins change their name. First things first.

  6. Given the slop produced by Congress, maybe they should change the team name to Washington Pigskins…

    or would that also offend Zoe?

  7. Who would of thought that in the 21st Century the American Government would be so offended to a a name which remembers and homers all Native Americans everywhere who live and have passed. WASHINGTON REDSKINS is a name for all American people to be proud of forever a Tribute. Oh yea it’s a NFL football teams name and I find it offensive that you would even have the thought about changing our name. Redskins forever!

  8. A couple of idiots …..how about working on something that matters….and how about Native Americans offended by you trying to take their image from everything…started with the nickel …..anyone who wants BOTH sides of this issue please check the Native American Redskins Nation and Native American Redskins Fans pages on FB…..the bias reporting on this issue in mainstream media is offensive to those of us that support the true meaning and history of the word and bashing a team and those they plan to attack in the future (Indians, Chiefs etc) is a waste of our tax money and the governments time….Lumbee Native American and so offended by Washington ….and Ray Halbritters millions donated to these idiots on this bandwagon….

  9. There are 500 plus Native American tribes in this country. About 70 or 80 have come out against the Redskins. That is FAR from every single tribe. There are even tribes that have come out in support and some that do business with the Redskins. Dont believe the media lies especially the scalp lie. Every knowledgeable person knows that it’s a lie. And yet some so called journalists print it uncritically as if it was established fact.