Indigenous

Anti-Redskins ad to air during NBA finals

The campaign to change the name and mascot of the Washington Redskins is heating up. Tonight, during game three of the NBA finals, a 60-second ad that is critical of the Redskins name will air in seven U.S. cities, including Washington, D.C. It was produced by the National Congress of American Indians.
The video titled Proud To Be highlights the strengths and positive attributes of indigenous peoples, as well as featuring prominent aboriginal people throughout history. (National Congress of American Indians)

The campaign to change the name and mascot of the Washington Redskins is heating up.

Tonight, during game three of the NBA finals, a 60-second ad that is critical of the Redskins name will air in seven U.S. cities, including Washington, D.C. It was produced by the National Congress of American Indians.

The ad is an excerpt from the video Proud To Be, which highlights the strengths and positive attributes of indigenous peoples, as well as featuring prominent aboriginal people throughout history.

The video ends by saying, "Native Americans call themselves many things, the one thing they don't...." and the final image is a picture of Redskins helmet.

The video has been seen nearly two million times on YouTube since its release before Super Bowl XXLVII earlier this year. 

The Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation in California said it paid a "significant amount" for the prime-time spot, but that the Change the Mascot fight is worth it.

"It’s just a time to get people thinking about putting an end to outward hatred and using sports as a tool to focus on racism," said Yocha Dehe Wintun tribal chairman Marshall McKay in a video

"When people slur a race, it’s damaging. I’m hoping the Change the Mascot campaign will make people realize that a name, a mascot, is hurtful."

Tribal secretary James Kinter said, "We hope that this empowers people so they can speak up, speak their word about how they feel about these types of images being used in professional sports and entertainment. This is just plain wrong."

The Washington Redskins organization has been facing increasing pressure to change the name, but owner Dan Snyder has said it is a "badge of honor" and he will never change it.

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