Change That Name

Much has been written recently, occasionally by me, about the move to change the name of the Washington Redskins. Some people allege that the name is offensive to Native Americans. I have thus far been opposed to the name change, but am now realizing that perhaps I have been too insensitive. The last thing I would ever want is for anyone to be offended. I am just hoping that the fans of other teams will return the favor as I am deeply and morally offended by some other professional sports nicknames. I demand that they be changed immediately as well. Given limited time, I will focus today only on Major League Baseball and NFL Football, though there are myriad offensive and insensitive team nicknames throughout the NBA and NHL, not to speak of college teams.

Here we go.

Baseball
Offensive Nickname Reason for Painful Offense
Minnesota Twins This has clear implications for conjoined twins, once pejoratively referred to as “Siamese twins.” Also, potentially offensive to both identical and fraternal twins. Don’t these folks have enough issues in finding their own identity without also having to deal with the painful reminder of a baseball team named after them.
New York Yankees Yankees was a negative term applied to the Union soldiers by the Rebels. Thus, this is a painful reminder of our country’s awful history of slavery Pre-Civil War.
Boston Red Sox My mother taught me to spell correctly and I am deeply offended by intentional misspellings. Must be changed to Red Socks.
Chicago White Sox See above on Red Sox. Also, use of the term “white” is a clear and offensive reference to the oppression caused by white men. Possibly the most offensive name in all professional sports.
Philadelphia Phillies Thinly veiled reference to fillies, which is offensive to women as an oft-used term to describe an attractive girl. Also, a complete affront to young female horses and their owners. This one is really awful. See later commentary on the complete absence of PETA and the SPCA from these discussions.
Chicago Cubs This one is offensive simply because they suck. Maybe a name change would make them better and, thus, less offensive.
Milwaukee Brewers Really? In this day and age of serious teen drinking behavior, we’re going to let a baseball team use a reference to beer in its team name? Unbelievable.
San Francisco Giants Are you kidding me? I grew up as a short kid. I’m a short adult. We are constantly being derided with short jokes. I’ve had to go through years of expensive therapy to get comfortable with my diminutive stature. And, there’s a team name called the Giants. Literally makes me sick to my stomach.
San Diego Padres Incredibly offensive due to the religious implications to Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Taoists, Buddhists, Rastafarians, and Zoroastrians.
Los Angeles Angels This is another clear violation of the doctrine of separation of church and sports. Much like the name Padres, Angels are generally a Christian religious concept. I’m amazed that the Zoroastrians ever attend baseball games at all.
Cleveland Indians and Atlanta Braves I see nothing particularly offensive about these names.
Football
Offensive Nickname Reason for Painful Offense
Minnesota Vikings I figured I would start with the most obvious and offensive name in all of sports. Are all white people of Northern European descent violent rapists and pillagers? If not, why do we insist on characterizing them as such? Shameful, truly shameful.
New England Patriots Even in pre-Revolutionary war times, there was ambiguity as to what constituted a “Patriot” vs. a “Loyalist.” Furthermore, we have many British citizens living here in the US. Must we really remind them of how we kicked their asses in the War for Independence? Feels offensive and insensitive to me.
New York Jets Jets. Are you kidding? The city that was so painfully hit by jets on 9/11 is going to retain the team name Jets. I’m baffled, not to speak of offended.
Cleveland Browns They may claim this name denotes team founder Paul Brown, much like the insensitive Redskins claim their name was once a term of respect. But, clearly this is now an affront to all people of color. Change it immediately or I’m never watching another Browns game.
Indianapolis Colts Wow, is all I can say. With all the gun violence in this country today and, we are going to allow a football team to have a name so vitally close to the “Colt 45,” a deadly handgun. The Washington Bullets had to change their name, but the Colts don’t? Total double standard.
Tennessee Titans and NY Giants See San Francisco Giants. I get more and more angry every time I think about this one.
Philadelphia Eagles This one is really terrible. The United States should be welcoming to peoples from all nations and we should not try to indoctrinate them with our symbols of freedom. We’re a melting pot, folks. A melting pot.
Dallas Cowboys They’re just offensive period.
New Orleans Saints See San Diego Padres and California Angels
Detroit Lions, Chicago Bears, Denver Broncos, Carolina Panthers, Jacksonville Jaguars, Seattle Seahawks, Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, and Miami Dolphins Where is PETA? Where is the SPCA? Where are the vegans? Football is a violent game. When we place the picture of a defenseless animal on the helmets of these teams and then let men bash these pictures against each other, we are encouraging a culture that glorifies violence against animals. Michael Vick was convicted for dogfighting, but the NFL still allows this symbolic violence against animals every Sunday.
Kansas City Chiefs I see nothing particularly offensive about this name.

In future posts, I will discuss how horrible it is to take a small child to a Raptors game or an environmentalist to a Pistons game. I will talk about how insensitive it is to name a team after the Thunder so clearly caused by global climate change. I will bemoan how dreadfully offended I am by a team called the Clippers when so many of us suffering from male pattern baldness have to be reminded of the haircuts we used to get. There’s so much offense here, I just can’t cover it all in one post.

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About Bruce Robertson

Bruce Robertson is an amateur writer and professional provocateur
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2 Responses to Change That Name

  1. Rich Boyd says:

    You missed that the “Jets” is a reference to “West Side Story,” that glorifies gang membership and violence, and casts the millions of “New Yorquenos” (Puerto Rican New Yorkers — there are more Puerto Ricans in New York, I am told, than there are in Puerto Rico) in a negative and exploitative light, as being violent gang members. The “Jets” and “Sharks.” Gang names.

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