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January 25, 2013

BP Unfiltered

Why Wahoo's Gotta Go

by Ben Lindbergh

Earlier this week, I came across a link from Craig Robinson at Flip Flop Fly Ballin’ to a cache of 14 radio broadcasts of baseball games from 1948-1967. If you like history or listening to baseball on the radio, this is a treasure trove, and you’ll want to spend a while absorbing the sounds of the game in the time of fast talk and high trousers: Boudreau, Berra, and Ballantine Beer.

One of the broadcasts is from the fifth game of the 1948 World Series and features Mel Allen (in the third of what would be 18 consecutive World Series assignments) and Jim Britt calling the Boston Braves’ 11-5 win over the series’ eventual victors, the Indians. It starts out innocently enough—a friendly greeting from Allen, a word from our sponsor (Gillette, not yet bragging about its blade counts), and a reminder that we’re listening to a relic of a time when someone still watched boxing. So far, so good. But it’s 1948, and it’s Indians vs. Braves. If you’re thinking, “That sounds like a recipe for some casual cultural insensitivity,” you’re right!

I’ve embedded the relevant bit below. Prepare to be snapped out of your nostalgia around the 30-second mark.

It’s not surprising that this would have been considered kosher on a national baseball broadcast in 1948. One need only look at that game’s lily-white lineups to be reminded of what passed for acceptable at the time: the Braves, the fifth major-league team to integrate, wouldn’t do so until 1950, and even the progressive, Bill Veeck-owned Indians fielded only two non-white players. What does seem a little surprising, in light of how long it's been since we left those lily-white lineups behind, is that some remnants of Allen’s attitude remain.

This was the Indians’ primary logo in 1948 (courtesy of SportsLogos.net):

By 1951, "Chief Wahoo" had evolved (if you can call it that) into this:

Since then, though, Wahoo hasn't aged a day:


Wahoo isn’t as easy to find as he once was, but the logo has shown surprising staying power. Earlier this month, the Braves’ so-called “Screaming Indian” made an ill-considered comeback (at least until the predictable  backlash), and Atlanta’s tomahawk chop is alive and well. Allen’s intro seems almost impossibly archaic, but at some point, won’t we look back and say the same about Wahoo?

While Wahoo’s silent grin might not set off the same alarm bells as Allen’s references to reservations, medicine men, and peace pipes (if only because we’re so used to seeing it), it comes from the same cultural lineage—one we shouldn’t be particularly proud of. As Emma Span once put it:

Look: I know it’s a tradition; I know the vast majority of people who do that chant, or wear caricatured Cleveland Indians mascot gear, are not racist and have no actual problem with Native Americans. But it’s well past time for those fans, and those teams, to demonstrate that by knocking this stuff off. Even if no great harm is being done now, these are the vestigial remains of a very real racism which has done plenty of harm, and I don’t understand why anyone would want to associate themselves with it. Does that pleasure of tradition really outweigh the ickiness of taking part, however briefly, in that kind of creaky, ugly, outdated world view?

We’ve come a long way in the last 65 years. Why not take one more step and make Wahoo go away for good?

 

Ben Lindbergh is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see Ben's other articles. You can contact Ben by clicking here

Related Content:  Indians,  Braves,  Chief Wahoo

65 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

BP Comment Quick Links

jashnew
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If we get rid of Chief Wahoo we will have to get rid of all human mascots. Do we want to do that? No Irish, Spartans, Trojans, Cowboys, Minutemen, Aztecs, Colonials, Senators, Hoosiers, Knights, Pirates, Warriors, Rebels, Aggies, Miners and etc.
This what we do because I like solutions. If you don't like it don't buy Cleveland Indian merchandise or watch their games. It's a baseball team that nobody really cares about.
I doubt ownership will do anything about it. It will be a slippery slope if the Indian mascot is changed.

Jan 25, 2013 10:04 AM
rating: -7
 
BP staff member Ben Lindbergh
BP staff

Those arguments were mentioned by Paul Lukas in the piece I linked to in the last line of the post. I thought he countered them fairly convincingly.

Jan 25, 2013 10:10 AM
 
Schere

That's a terrible argument.

Jan 25, 2013 10:13 AM
rating: 3
 
jalee121

"It will be a slippery slope"

I disagree. In fact I look at your whole argument as a slippery slope fallacy. Mainly because besides the Pirates, none of those mascots are MLB team names. Even more so, I don't know of a big pirate population in the US that are being offended by the Pittsburgh mascot.

And some of the other mascots you named don't have negative or stereotypical connotations to them (such as Minutemen, Colonials, Senators, Hoosiers, Miners etc.) and some are nicknames for groups of people that simply don't exist anymore (Spartans and Trojans come to mind).

I can't really fault anyone for not taking offense to the Cleveland logo and nickname. But it does hurt me a little that a sport like Baseball has been somewhat progressive culturally in this countries history.

Jan 25, 2013 10:20 AM
rating: 4
 
Richard Bergstrom

You must've missed "Talk Like a Pirate" day. They're around. Of course, it's hard to understand what they say so it's hard to tell if they are offended or not.

Jan 26, 2013 16:48 PM
rating: 0
 
Roger Thornhill

I think the vast majority of anti-Wahoo folks would be happy with getting rid of all ethnic mascots. Aztecs, for instance, probably should go. Hoosiers and Irish aren't the same either, because these mascots are self-referential (or were at one point, in the case of Notre Dame). If a bunch of Native Americans want to start a baseball team called the Indians, they should feel free.

Your solution doesn't really work, because the only people who could boycott in numbers sufficient to make a difference are Caucasians and Hispanics. If the markets decide, every other group will be fair game.

Besides, what would be the harm, even if that slippery slope came to pass? That's not a question you even attempt to answer. The only answer I've ever heard is tradition. Big deal. We have plenty of traditions. Some of them are worth keeping and some aren't. If a fan can't fathom his favorite team with a new, they either have a profound lack of imagination or weren't much of a fan in the first place.

Jan 25, 2013 10:20 AM
rating: 4
 
Dodger300

Not the least bit convincing.

Plus you insult the team to boot, but falsely stating that nobody cares about them.

Jan 25, 2013 11:48 AM
rating: 2
 
Mr. Cthulhu

"It's a baseball team that nobody really cares about."

I didn't know Chris Perez had a BP account...

Jan 25, 2013 14:33 PM
rating: 6
 
seabass77

History teacher here. The main lesson of history: Everything changes all the time. It's past it's time and if history is correct it's on its last legs, as it should be imo.

Jan 25, 2013 10:35 AM
rating: 6
 
amazin_mess

I live near a reservation. You see members of the tribe wearing Indians (Wahoo logo) hats and Redskins hats all the time.

Who is this offending anyway?

Jan 25, 2013 14:22 PM
rating: 1
 
Roger Thornhill

Potentially, any Indian other than the handful you've seen wearing team gear. There's a great big world out there.

Jan 25, 2013 16:03 PM
rating: 0
 
delatopia

Yes, because the Indians you see represent ALL Indians, of course.

Jan 26, 2013 02:46 AM
rating: 1
 
kcboomer
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At times you would think that BP should rename itself the Baseball Leftist. In stead of mounting a soapbox and sermonizing about something as trivial as this how about doing some positive actual work for a those in need?

I would rather listen to you tell me how you helped disabled vets or the homeless over the weekend than read one of these holier than thou screeds.

Jan 25, 2013 14:54 PM
rating: -19
 
Mr. Cthulhu

Really? Baseball Leftist? Come on man, Baseball Pro-Leftist flows so much better and was the low hanging fruit you could have so easily grabbed! I am disappointed.

But, onto the rest of your comment, it was just all kinds of crazy. Not sure how you get from this mascot is an insensitive and a relic of an era of racial intolerance to homeless vets and how Ben should just help them already. But, I think you're letting a perceived difference in ideology colour your opinion of this article.

Then again, I am Canadian, so I am probably just an elitist leftist bastard :)

Jan 25, 2013 15:08 PM
rating: 13
 
Richard Bergstrom

If you're offended by a single article, I suggest you read the title of the article before clicking on it next time...wasn't it pretty evident what this post was about just from the title?

Jan 26, 2013 16:52 PM
rating: 0
 
Dodger300

Your point is that racism doesn't bother those on the right, only those on the left?

I have to grant you that your point is probably well taken.

Jan 26, 2013 18:52 PM
rating: 4
 
Llarry

I think just ditching Wahoo would be a fine step in the right direction, even if the Indians name is retained.

Jan 25, 2013 15:30 PM
rating: 2
 
John Carter

What if we were more politically correct:
Cleveland Erie - confusing
Cleveland Iroquois - doesn't flow
Cleveland Native Americans - long and boring
Cleveland Cuyahogas? - that has a nice ring, but Cuyahoga just means crooked river.

What if we went with something Cleveland is known for:
Cleveland Rock 'N Rollers? - long and aiding competition
Cleveland Burning Rivers?

How about something baseball related:
Cleveland Steinbrenners?
Cleveland Fellers?
Cleveland Boudreaus?
Cleveland Dobies?

Those don't work. What else?
Cleveland Great Lakers? - better than those basketballers
Cleveland Standard Oils?

How about putting the name up to the highest bidder:
Cleveland Primus Capitals?
Cleveland Sherman-Williams?

I guess we have to go to animals or sock colors. The problem is there that all the good ones are used already. Remember that Tampa Bay couldn't use "Sting Rays" because some school had rights to it. But wait? Who has "Bats"? They must have bats flying around Cleveland at night, we have plenty of them down lake here in Toronto. It's about time a baseball team called itself the Bats!

Jan 25, 2013 16:57 PM
rating: -2
 
amazin_mess

Cleveland Steamers

Jan 25, 2013 17:14 PM
rating: 8
 
John Carter

That's a good one, seriously.

Jan 26, 2013 10:14 AM
rating: 0
 
BP staff member Dave Pease
BP staff
(2)

It is only good if you don't use the google.

Jan 26, 2013 14:07 PM
 
BP staff member Sam Miller
BP staff

Cleveland Fellers is spectacular, though perhaps less so considering that there was a guy in the Indians' team history named Feller.

Jan 25, 2013 18:34 PM
 
John Carter

And by "Dobies", I'm thinking "Doobies".

Jan 26, 2013 10:12 AM
rating: -2
 
John Carter

If you like the Cleveland Fellers, how about the Cleveland Swishers?

Jan 27, 2013 08:18 AM
rating: -2
 
jssharo

Anyone for the Cleveland Spiders?

Jan 25, 2013 19:41 PM
rating: 7
 
Mr. Cthulhu

Yes! It meets the "tradition" standard and the "it's a damn awesome name" standard!

It's settled. I am becoming a billionaire, buying this franchise and renaming them the Spiders!

I will give you one ticket in return for the inspiration jssharo, but you'll have to pay for your own parking.

Jan 25, 2013 23:14 PM
rating: 1
 
John Carter

I think "Spiders" would turn off the multitude of Cleveland's arachnophobes. There are reasons that name did not endure.

By the way the oldest continuous team name in baseball is "Philadelphia Phillies" - leaving the Quakers logo behind in 1890. Surprisingly, the American League "Detroit Tigers" have the next oldest - and the oldest franchise that never had any sort of name change. That's what they have been called since their arrival in the Western League of 1894 - before that league became the American League in 1900 (and promptly considered a Major League in 1901). You could argue that the "Pittsburg Pirates" of 1891-1911 becoming the "Pittsburgh Pirates" in 1912 was not really a name change. That still makes "Pirates" the fourth oldest continuous nickname, behind "Giants" of 1885 and the "Phillies" and "Dodgers" of 1890. The "Cincinnati Reds" were also shortened from "Red Stockings" in 1890, but were known as the "Redlegs" from 1954-1958.

The Cleveland Indians joined the Western League as the Grand Rapids Hustlers the same year as the Tigers: 1894. That was when Ban Johnson took over the league. When that league became the American League the Hustlers moved to Cleveland and became the Blues. I like that, but it wasn't a musical term in 1900. The Blues is now better associated with Chicago or Memphis. Team nicknames were much more informal at the turn of the century - something generally sportswriters used out of convenience. Baseball-Reference lists them as the Cleveland Bronchos in 1902, then the Cleveland Naps from 1903 to 1914. As that was so due to their star Napolean Lejoie, that brings us back to the Cleveland Fellers - or maybe the Cleveland Asdrubals? Drubys? (again: Doobies), Carlos Santanas? (again: Rock 'N Rollers), Cabs?

The Cleveland Spiders were a National League team that died in 1899.

Jan 26, 2013 11:12 AM
rating: -1
 
delatopia

Honestly, if we had a baseball team with the name of the Cleveland Negroes, or the Cleveland Jews, or the Cleveland Banditos, or the Cleveland Chinamen, and a similarly cartoonish and stereotypical logo, people would immediately see how ridiculous, outdated and racist it is. But because it's an Indian, the original doormats of North America as far as Manifest Destiny goes, it's fair game. It's shameful and embarrassing.

I don't know how Dan Snyder sleeps at night, owning a team called the Washington Redskins. Oh, wait, I know -- that guy doesn't have a soul.

Jan 26, 2013 02:53 AM
rating: 9
 
delatopia

Honestly, what's the difference between all these logos in terms of stereotyped imagery?

http://www.clevescene.com/imager/the-curse-of-chief-wahoo/b/original/2954425/7ba4/cover-10.jpg

Jan 26, 2013 03:13 AM
rating: 0
 
delatopia

That picture comes from a pretty thoughtful article, by the way. And the comments break down along the typical political lines you would expect, much as they do here.

http://www.clevescene.com/gyrobase/the-curse-of-chief-wahoo/Content?oid=2954423

Jan 26, 2013 03:39 AM
rating: 0
 
tmangell

Most of the comments miss the point: the nickname isn't offensive, the logo is. As someone who proudly has Native American ancestry, I'm OK with the Indians, or the Braves, or the Illini. I do draw the line at images that demean others. I think (not sure) that the Braves did get rid of Chief Nokahoma - even they got how offensive that was.

I do like the Spiders, though, or the Fellers.

As for the Redskins, Snyder will never get rid of the nickname, offensive as it is. He is the stereotypical fanboy owner who's clueless.

Jan 26, 2013 07:08 AM
rating: 3
 
tmangell

As for the Mel Allen excerpt, wow! I think the only offensive term he didn't mention was squaw. Even in the 40s, he actually spoke about the reservation!

Jan 26, 2013 07:12 AM
rating: 0
 
SaxonB

While I agree with Ben here, I do think it's also another form of cultural imperialism where we are now making the decisions and discussing these topics without the input of the actual population that is being depicted in a derogatory manner.

I just don't understand how you can write this article without asking a native american. Tribal leader, professor, writer, rights advocate...anyone??

It's also interesting that no one has brought up that there has been a running discussion amongst many tribes over the term "native american" vs. "indian." And while "indian" was an inaccurate description applied to them by anglo-saxon settlers, there has actually been a shift in many native tribes to prefer the nomenclature of "indian" since "America" is where they are native form seeing how they are here first.

And yet, "native american" is the preferred, PC term that has been used and applied on government forms without the input of the actual native population.

Clearly, it's a logo that probably needs to be phased out. However, why not input from someone in the tribes themselves. Maybe I am in the minority here but the Braves logo seems somewhat flattering to me. Though, I can't make that call neither here nor there b/c I'm not a indian/native american.

Jan 26, 2013 08:23 AM
rating: 0
 
SaxonB

Correction:
*"America" is NOT where they are native from seeing how they were here first and there was no "America"

Jan 26, 2013 08:24 AM
rating: 0
 
BP staff member Ben Lindbergh
BP staff

Check the article linked from "shouldn't be particularly proud of."

Jan 26, 2013 08:51 AM
 
SaxonB

Good article and I did miss that link in the first read, through.

To be clear, I think Wahoo should be phased out. I agree with you. I do feel though that a lot of the discussion going on does lack native american voices in their articles.

Jan 26, 2013 12:04 PM
rating: 0
 
Dodger300

One certainly doesn't need to be Native American to understand that Chief Wahoo is a highly offensive stereotype, any more than one needs to be African American to know the depictions of "Sambo" and "welfare queens" are also offensive.

That's because our world is not limited to our own narrow perspective, but rather we are imbued with the ability to experience empathy for others.

Jan 26, 2013 19:09 PM
rating: 1
 
SaxonB

I agree. And I don't think I said you needed to be Native American to understand it's offensiveness.

I just wanted more Native American voices.

Jan 27, 2013 19:06 PM
rating: 0
 
Pat Folz

The other problem with referring to the descendants of the aboriginal people of these continents as "Indians" is that there is a large and growing chunk of the population with roots in actual India. The logo needs to go NOW, obviously, and honestly the nickname - for both the team and the ethnicity - needs to follow shortly, for practical concerns if nothing else.

Jan 26, 2013 22:19 PM
rating: 0
 
Richard Bergstrom

India as a country didn't really exist until 1947. India had a history of forming up from individual kingdoms, then being conquered/controlled by one power or another (Persians, English, etc) and broken up again.

Ironically, the Cleveland Indians have had their nickname for longer than India's been an official country ;)

Jan 27, 2013 07:18 AM
rating: 0
 
BP staff member Ben Lindbergh
BP staff

Also didn't really exist until 1947: Cleveland's Chief Wahoo. And this Chief Wahoo didn't exist AFTER 1947: http://www.authentichistory.com/diversity/native/is3-buffoon/Big_Chief_Wahoo_Strips.html.

Jan 27, 2013 07:38 AM
 
Richard Bergstrom

The basic idea I was trying to convey was that the Cleveland Indians were called the Indians before India existed as a country.

Jan 27, 2013 20:26 PM
rating: 0
 
Dodger300

I don't know what it accomplishes to try to limit your point to a time when India was able to break free from its colonial rulers.

The fact is that India existed long before nation-states were ever developed as a political mechanism, and the idea of "countries" was conceived.

Otherwise, Christopher Columbus would have never set sail for the land called India. Moreover, if India hadn't already existed, the explorers of the "New World" would not mistakenly believed they had come across the real "Indians."

Feb 04, 2013 19:06 PM
rating: 1
 
Mr. Cthulhu

So, can someone explain to me why they want Wahoo to stay?

I really haven't heard a good explanation, beyond the reflexive "you must be insert political group you disagree with here" argument.

The image was born out of a bad place. It was a caricature of a race of people that comes from a time when those in a position of power believed that race of people to be lesser than them. It's cartoonish depiction of features of that race seemed okay at the time, because society didn't really view that race as equals or "civilized people".

Why do we wish to celebrate that ignorance today? Because our Grandparents cheered for a team with that logo?

What bothers me most isn't that some Native American may see the logo and be offended. But, that so many people see the logo and aren't upset. Upset about the way we used to treat people with different genes as a society (we're far from perfect today, but we are better). Why do you want a relic from that era displayed proudly on a major league baseball team's hats?

Jan 26, 2013 12:32 PM
rating: 3
 
delatopia

As an Indians fan going back to the mid-1970s who also knows that Chief Wahoo should be relegated to the dustbin of history, I must say that there is a part of me that feels some affection for the logo despite his obvious stereotyping. I grew up with Chief Wahoo; he graced the uniform of all sorts of players I rooted for, from scrubs like Veryzer and Duffy to phenoms like Charboneau and Snyder to stars like Sutcliffe and Carter and Belle and Thome. He's the one continuous thread with all of those guys.

I guess the best way I can put it is that, despite the fact that he's embarrassing and the fact that you know you shouldn't be so disposed to him, like a crazy aunt you keep in the attic or an annoying uncle who's obnoxious in public, Chief Wahoo is still seen as family. And it's hard to get rid of that attachment. It's a lot easier to say "ditch the Chief" when you're not a fan of the team.

Jan 26, 2013 18:10 PM
rating: 0
 
R.A.Wagman

There is really no good reason for the Cleveland franchise to keep the Indians nickname.
Even tradition falls short. This is a franchise that has only two World Series titles to its credit. Many disappointments, the mistake by the lake, Ray Chapman, etc.

On the other hand, changing to a new name could be a real marketing boon to the organization. They could open up the re-naming as a civic competition, much like the Toronto Raptors franchise did before settling on that name. IIRC, their attendance figures could use a boost anyway.

Jan 26, 2013 13:08 PM
rating: 0
 
R.A.Wagman

BTW - I would vote for the Spiders, or the Foresters - Cleveland is known as Forest City.

Jan 26, 2013 13:09 PM
rating: 0
 
John Carter

That's more of a stretch of the imagination than the fact that New Jersey is the Garden State.

Jan 26, 2013 15:33 PM
rating: -3
 
delatopia

Only if your sense of history doesn't go back more than, say, 50 years.

Jan 26, 2013 18:28 PM
rating: 0
 
John Carter

I was born in New Jersey 58 years ago. It had many super highways running through it then (or as early as I can remember - as a precocious map studying 4 or 5 year old). The Newark area was one big stink pot. The New Jersey Turnpike brought you through vast stretches of swampland. However, my sister lived near Morristown from 1981-2011. Northern New Jersey did and still does have an even larger areas of grassy suburbs of New York and Philadelphia on rolling hills. For all I know, that's how it got its nickname. It's just that we don't associate the state with gardens.

As for Cleveland, I'm not an expert, but I can't believe they've had much foresting there for 100 years. From what I've seen, Ohio looks pretty much like New Jersey. Akron = Newark. Columbus = Morristown. Who thinks of forests when they think of Cleveland?

Jan 26, 2013 21:44 PM
rating: -2
 
delatopia

Well, I didn't necessarily mean that 50 years ago these were garden spots and forested regions, but that 50 years ago I imagine one can remember talk of New Jersey being a farm state or Ohio being very woodsy. There's a Forest City lumber/DIY-type national chain that got its start in Ohio the early 1900s.

Jan 26, 2013 23:33 PM
rating: 0
 
John Carter

There is no argument that these places must have had a past that justified their nicknames and that those nicknames are now amusingly outdated. To defend your 50 year time frame, however, you must consider that vast suburbs of New York extended across much of northern New Jersey well before 50 years ago, while Philadelphia's suburbs possibly go back even further. Then there is the Princeton area in-between - also long ago de-farmed. Princetonians consider themselves locals to both N.Y. and Philly, so northern New Jersey is all one big suburb. The coast, of course, has long been a well settled resort area. The Monopoly game based on Atlantic City is, what, 80 years old? Sure, the 'burbs have extended even further since then, but New Jersey was already better known for its huge suburban area 50 years ago than practically anything else. Although, they do grow excellent corn.

Jan 27, 2013 08:15 AM
rating: -2
 
Richard Bergstrom

The Chicago Bears should be renamed because, from what I understand, they aren't all gay players.

Jan 26, 2013 16:53 PM
rating: 5
 
amazin_mess

Huh?

Jan 27, 2013 09:44 AM
rating: -1
 
delatopia

Someone needs to brush up on his slang.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bear_%28gay_culture%29

Jan 27, 2013 13:54 PM
rating: 0
 
jashnew
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This article actually insults the people you are trying to protect. It's OK because most Progressives think with their heart instead of their brain. The "Indian" pictured as Chief Wahoo does not exist today. They existed 100 years and then after that they assimilated. They opened casinos, sent their kids to college, and stopped wearing feathers in their hair. What you are saying is that the Native Americans today look like Chief Wahoo. If you think Chief Wahoo resembles a Native American today you are a racist.
Modern day Greeks don't look like Spartans or Trojans.
Modern day white people don't look like Pirates, Cowboys, Hoosiers, and Knights
People from the South don't look like the UNLV mascot.
Chief Wahoo is an old image that represents a romanticize period in our history.
Lighten up. Its just a mascot. Try to realize when you are being a racist.

Jan 27, 2013 13:07 PM
rating: -6
 
delatopia

That's awesome. Do you view the antebellum South, with "laborers" toiling away in the fields on plantations in the South, as being a charming and romanticized period in our history as well? Are you one of those clueless (or dishonest, I haven't figured out which) revisionists who thinks the South was merely defending "states' rights" in fighting the Civil War?

There are PLENTY of Indians who are offended by the logo, I assure you. There are also plenty who don't care, but I don't profess to speak for either group. One of the fraudulently paternalistic arguments I see trotted out in these kinds of discussion quite a bit (thankfully not much here) is: "Don't they have bigger things to worry about? It's such a petty thing." And I guess my response is: Who are you to decide what's important to someone when that issue pertains to them? Anyway, "it's just a mascot" ties in with that. How about these mocking logos for the Cleveland Negroes? Is that "just a mascot" to you?

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_ON2JOBVPzEM/RgM1475HLtI/AAAAAAAAAAw/9OytGN37Ha8/s200/wahoo_negroes.jpg

http://honorindians.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/05/copy-of-cleveland-negros-grey-logo.bmp

I'll also be damned if I'm going to let someone who has twice posted remarkably, stunningly ignorant nonsense on this thread tell progressives to "realize when they are being racist." Do conservatives only have moronic defenses on this and other issues?

Jan 27, 2013 13:35 PM
rating: 2
 
delatopia

BTW, if you really consider Chief Wahoo from a "romanticize [sic] period in our history," Mr. Cthulhu above puts it much better than I ever could:

" ... this mascot is an insensitive and a relic of an era of racial intolerance ..."

But I guess I do see how conservatives view those times as "a romanticized period in our history." Remember those days when we didn't have to be considerate of minorities! Sigh ... Another julep, Uncle Tom!

Jan 27, 2013 13:43 PM
rating: 0
 
jashnew

Delatopia- I appreciate you reading both my posts. I care about this issue because I do not like political correctness. It limits the freedom of speech. It's entirely up to the owners of the Indians. If enough people protest about the mascot they will change their name. I think you are missing my argument. Indians are just like Pirates, Knights, and Cowboys. They don't exist anymore. They are all from a different period. I wish I could talk to a person who's ancestor were Indians. I really don't think they would care. I'm not upset at cowboy or miner mascots. My ancestors were cowboys and miners.

Jan 28, 2013 10:05 AM
rating: -2
 
delatopia

jashnew, thanks for a response that was a lot more polite than mine was.

As far your ancestors being miners and cowboys, I am also guessing that your ancestors probably never belonged to a race that was seen as less than human and was systematically eradicated with smallpox blankets and constant wars, moved from their lands to reservations, made to ditch their centuries-old lifestyles for ones they had no experience with (and had a hard time adjusting to), and so on. Were your ancestors ever at the bottom of the racial "totem pole" in this country, so to speak, like American Indians were? Can you not see how some members of a race that has been treated so shabbily by the dominant culture in this country might not really care to be "celebrated" by being used as mascots?

You say you don't like political correctness. Well, PC also stands for something else: Plain Courtesy. If a segment of the population says, please, stop ogling us, or stop referring to us with these names, or stop using us as mascots, or treat us as fairly as your own are treated, what you are saying by rejecting their "political correctness" is essentially, "The other groups' thoughts and wishes are not as important as ours." That is what it comes down to. You wouldn't do it if a relative asked you to not use Sue but call her Susan, so why is it less important when a someone from a different race/sexual orientation/gender asks you the same thing? You are operating from a dominant culture perspective where your POV is automatically "correct" and everyone else's is less than that. And members of the other groups aren't necessarily right, but when you reject it out of hand as being PC, you're being dismissive, unfair and, basically, prejudiced. Screeching "PC!" is the lamest, most thoughtless excuse there is for rejecting other people's points of view. You're reacting and not considering or thinking. Other people wouldn't hold their views unless they were important to them, and the views of women or minorities or gays aren't automatically less important or correct because their POV differs from yours, or the dominant culture's.

You say you'd like to talk to an ancestor of an Indian sometime. Ben Lindbergh linked to a great article with points of view from Indians, but perhaps you missed it the first time. It's here, and it has some good opinions worth considering:

http://www.clevescene.com/gyrobase/the-curse-of-chief-wahoo/Content?oid=2954423

I hope you're able to consider other people's points of view a little more seriously and not automatically reject them as being "PC" because they disagree with you. Walk in their shoes sometime. It's very liberating.

Jan 29, 2013 01:36 AM
rating: 0
 
jashnew
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Delatopia- I appreciate the response. I did go to the link and read the whole article. I think what is lacking is a sense of humor. Chief Wahoo is funny. It's not malicious or destructive. It sounds like it's one person who probably needs a hobby that is also a rable rouser. I wouldn't get too excited.
I use to live in Central Illinois and was a big University of Illinois fan. We all know their mascot is The Fighting Illini. The University did the best job I have ever seen in honoring the Illini Nation. The person that played the Chief was Native American and beloved. But there were four people from the Illini Nation that wanted the Chief removed. All other Illini's loved the Chief and the university. These four Native Americans were coached by hardcore Progressive groups to get the mascot eliminated. They were used as pawns in the progressive movement on mascots. Ever since then I decided never to give into political correctness.
Like I said before the majority of Native Americans could care less. Do me a favor and Google the Souix Nation's "fight" to get the North Dakota mascot removed. You'll find that 4 or 5 people are trying to get it removed. North Dakota University honors the Souix Nation and the majority of the Souix know this.
I know, I know Chief Wahoo is a caricature of an "Indian". But it looks like an Indian brave smiling to me. It's funny and playful. The fight in getting this mascot removed is fake.

Jan 30, 2013 10:23 AM
rating: -4
 
Dodger300

It is eminently clear that you have vowed never to care if the things you say are offensive to others.

What is puzzling is that you can believe that is a point of pride.

Feb 05, 2013 09:39 AM
rating: 1
 
amazin_mess

I agree. But this supersensitive world of today does not.

Jan 27, 2013 18:07 PM
rating: -1
 
John Carter

Favorite favorite-son of Cleveland: Henry Mancini ("Pink Panther", "Peter Gunn", "Moonriver", etc.)

Jan 27, 2013 20:14 PM
rating: -3
 
John Carter

Cleveland Moonrivers.

Jan 27, 2013 20:15 PM
rating: -3
 
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