Redskins Name Change Urged By US Congress

James Johnson

A Washington Redskins name change could become a reality in the near future.

Ten members of Congress recently sent a letter to Redskins owner Daniel Snyder in which they urged him to change the name of his beloved NFL franchise.

The Redskins name change has been a hot topic of discussion because of its negative connotations to the Native American community.

On Tuesday, the Congress members revealed that letters have been sent to Snyder, Redskins sponsor FedEx, 31 NFL franchises, and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

In the letter, the 10 members of the US Congress write: "Native Americans throughout the country consider the 'R-word' a racial, derogatory slur akin to the 'N-word' among African Americans or the 'W-word' among Latinos."

Supporting the name change are Oklahoma Republican Tom Cole and Minnesota Democrat Betty McCollum. The leaders of the Congressional Native American Caucus would like the Redskins name change to occur as soon as possible.

Dan Snyder has revealed on several occasions that he will never change the name of the team. Snyder's refusal to change the name has turned into a legal battle. Groups opposing the Washington Redskins name have attempted to remove its trademark protection. If the trademark is removed, the team could lose out on merchandising sales as other manufacturers flood the market with the Redskins name. Essentially losing the trademark would mean a change in name or a loss of money.

Among suggested names have been the Washington Senators, Washington Pigskins, Washington Hogs, Washington Warriors, and Washington Red Hawks. The former name has floated around on several occasions because of its attachment to the local Red Hawk bird.

While some fans and Dan Snyder himself argue that fans will not accept a Redskins name change, the truth is such a move was enacted by the University of Illinois when in 2007 Chief Illiniwek was laid to rest. Fans bought up as much Illiniwek merchandise they could before the name change, and then they allowed the old name to fade into the past.

Do you think a Washington Redskins name change is going to happen?