Redskins Fan Cried in Car Over Trademark Ruling: ‘We’re Keeping the Indian Spirit Alive’
WASHINGTON (CBSDC) — The news of the Redskins losing their six federally registered trademarks came in fast and furious Wednesday, and was overwhelming to some, like one female Redskins fans who says she sat in her car and cried upon learning of the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s ruling.
Lauren in Winchester called into 106.7 The Fan’s Grant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier after the news broke, relaying her deeply saddened reaction to the ruling, then stating her case for why the name should remain the same, for perpetuity.
“When I heard the news, first off, I texted all my friends,” she said. “And then I just sat in the car and cried, because I know that it’s really probably going to be the end of the name, and the thing of it is, every single person who is a Redskins fan — and I’ve been one pretty much my whole life — you look at the name, it’s a sense of pride.
“When people have their feathers on and our Indian gear, it’s a prideful situation. It’s all the people on the outside that are looking at it as it’s derogatory or something, but that’s not how the fans embrace it at all. So I can’t really understand the mindset, and I really don’t want the name to change.”
“If the name does change, I’m not gonna be a fan anymore,” she said.
That last part seemed to be a common refrain uttered on sports talk radio throughout the day by Redskins fans — if the team does change the name, they’ll cease to care as much about the team or even stop rooting for it altogether.
Asked if she at least understands how Native Americans could possibly be offended by the name, she responded:
“Um, I do see what they’re saying, but again, I would just reiterate the fact that all the fans that wear the jersey and fill that stadium every Sunday, we’re doing it with pride. I mean, I feel like we’re keeping the Indian spirit alive by representing that particular group.”
Paulsen continued to follow up with the caller.
“I guess my point would be: if you and your friends were saying something playfully with each other, and it’s just something, that for you guys, is a joke or something that’s fun, but someone’s offended in the room that overhears it, aren’t they still offended?” Paulsen asked.
“Um, they could be offended, yes,” she admitted. “But you have to understand the point of view of the fans as well, and take that into consideration. What other teams do you see people wearing full, you know, Indian outfits and being prideful of that history? What else other place are you really seeing that, besides in the communities with Native Americans?
“You don’t see that,” Paulsen interjected.
“No, you don’t,” she said. “So I think it’s something that’s really special that should be embraced, because we are still keeping that spirit alive.”
“If they change the name — and I don’t care what it is: Warriors or Senators or whatever — are you still a fan of the team as passionately as you are today, or does that change?” Paulsen asked.
“No, it changes,” she said. “It changes the whole situation.”
Let me just say, if you’re of the position that you do not want the Redskins name changed, perhaps it’s not the best idea to point out that no other professional sports teams are still currently celebrated by fans dressed in Native American garb, or “Indian outfits,” as Lauren in Winchester so eloquently put it.