Fri. Jun 2nd, 2023

WASHINGTON — The controversy over Native American names in skilled and collegiate sports activities arrived on the White Home on Monday, when President Biden hosted the Atlanta Braves, winners of final yr’s World Collection.

The staff’s identify and its accompanying tomahawk brand have lengthy come below criticism as offensive to Native Individuals. Throughout video games, Braves followers mimic a “tomahawk chop” whereas crudely simulating Native American battle chants. That follow has additionally acquired scrutiny, most just lately when the Braves defeated the Houston Astros in six video games final yr to grow to be Main League Baseball champions.

Atlanta Braves followers do the “tomahawk chop” throughout a recreation in opposition to the Milwaukee Brewers, October 2021. (John Bazemore/AP)

“We now have repeatedly and unequivocally made our place clear — Native individuals are not mascots, and degrading rituals just like the tomahawk chop that dehumanize and hurt us haven’t any place in American society,” Fawn Sharp, president of the Nationwide Congress of American Indians, mentioned final yr.

A reluctant tradition warrior, Biden made no point out of the controversy over the identify in the course of the White Home ceremony, which has grow to be a standard occasion for skilled and collegiate sports activities groups.

“Atlanta is a superb American sports activities metropolis,” Biden mentioned as he was offered with a Braves jersey bearing the quantity 46 (he’s the forty sixth president). “And the Braves are a giant cause for that. This staff has actually been a part of American historical past for over 150 years.”

Joe Biden with members of the Atlanta Braves team and organization

President Biden with members of the Atlanta Braves staff and group on the White Home on Monday. (Evan Vucci/AP)

Later within the day, White Home press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was requested by a reporter in regards to the debate over the Braves’ identify and the tomahawk chop. The staff has mentioned it will not think about a reputation change, however different organizations have made comparable avowals, solely to ultimately relent within the face of public strain.

“We imagine it’s essential to have this dialog. Native American and Indigenous voices, they need to be on the heart of the dialog,” Jean-Pierre mentioned.

“That’s one thing the president believes,” she continued. “That’s one thing this administration believes. And he has constantly emphasised that every one individuals need to be handled with dignity and respect. You hear that always from this president. The identical is true right here. And we should always take heed to Native American and Indigenous people who find themselves most impacted by this.”

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre

White Home press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre at a briefing on Monday. (Susan Walsh/AP)

The Republican Social gathering promptly shared a video clip of Jean-Pierre’s response on Twitter, in evident hopes of arousing sentiment in opposition to Democrats in Georgia, which is internet hosting essential races for governor and the U.S. Senate this yr.

Jean-Pierre didn’t reply to a Yahoo Information request for elaboration.

Some conservatives see the removing of Native American names as empty gestures and an assault on the athletic logos they’ve come to adore over the a long time. However throughout a interval of intense racial reckoning, it has grow to be tougher to justify symbols of a legacy that’s, in keeping with many historians and activists, rife with homicide and exploitation.

Melania and Donald Trump

Melania and Donald Trump do the tomahawk chop previous to Sport 4 of the World Collection between the Houston Astros and the Atlanta Braves, Oct. 30, 2021. (Elsa/Getty Photographs)

In the summertime of 2020, the Washington Redskins of the Nationwide Soccer League grew to become the “Washington Soccer Workforce” whereas deciding on a brand new identify (ultimately selecting the Commanders). The Cleveland Indians — whose brand was a cartoonish rendition of a Native American — grew to become the Guardians. The modifications bothered then-President Donald Trump, who lamented on Twitter that the groups had been “altering their names as a way to be politically right.”

As a result of Trump was such a polarizing determine, some championship sports activities groups stayed away from the White Home throughout his time in workplace. However in the course of the Obama administration, the Chicago Blackhawks of the Nationwide Hockey League visited the White Home on three events, delighting the president, a Chicagoan, with their Stanley Cup victories.

President Barack Obama with the Chicago Blackhawks

President Barack Obama with the Chicago Blackhawks, the 2015 NHL Stanley Cup champions. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP)

Though the Florida State Seminoles received the collegiate soccer championship in 2013, a White Home go to by no means materialized, in what some perceived as an intentional slight. That very same yr, Obama known as on the Redskins to decide on a brand new identify. “If I had been the proprietor of the staff and I knew that the identify of my staff … was offending a large group of individuals, I’d take into consideration altering it,” he mentioned.

By admin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *