The government was shut down and we had spent up to the limit of what we could legally borrow. But the country was not focused on the fact that our new health care law was beginning as a dismal failure. Or that our tax collectors are running rampant with no promised Presidential butt-kicking. Record numbers of people are on food stamps, even as our economy has supposedly grown for four years and the employment rate has supposedly shrunk. None of these constitute the second most important issue in America. That would be the name of Washington D.C.’s professional football team.
My commenting on this issue has no personal interest. I could not give a rat’s behind about the NFL. I am a Saturday football guy when teams like the Buckeyes, Bruins, Crimson Tide and Fighting Irish play. But watching the spectacle that has occurred over the name of a team that has existed for 81 years has been quite astonishing.
I am aware of some disruption that has occurred across America over teams named after groups now called “Native Americans.” Well, they were not actually Native Americans because they came from elsewhere also.It is just that they came here before the Europeans. We have to call them Native Americans because someone decided that at some point, and it made some people happy.
It did not exactly make the newly-named Native Americans happy. They are still being segregated on mostly worthless tribal lands. They are still living under the protection of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (who still call them Indians) on supposedly sovereign lands. They have not been mainstreamed into this society and suffer every cultural malady that could possibly occur when you are being helped by our federal government. The only thing that has advanced since they were moved around the country over a century ago is that they now own casinos. Yes, folks, we gave them the right to operate gambling parlors because they live on fictionalized sovereign land. And, of course, we changed their name to Native Americans.