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Letter: Poll shows vast majority isn’t offended by mascot

Poll shows vast majority isn’t offended by mascot

While much time, emotion and coverage has been devoted locally to the Lancaster mascot debate and nationally to the debate over the Washington Redskins team name, the results of a recently completed and ignored (for obvious reasons) poll says, “hold your horses!” The Washington Post, no bastion of conservative thought or reporting, recently released the results of a poll it conducted of 504 American Indians in which 90 percent of respondents said that the moniker “Redskin” was not viewed as a racial slur nor were they bothered by its use in sports teams names. Only 9 percent viewed it as a slur.

How can this be? We’ve been told for years that the name is offensive to Indians, such claims coming, by and large, from non-Indians. The report went on to state that this result is consistent with previous polls on the subject and that the vast majority of Indians do not regard this as an important issue facing their community. Of course, the National Congress of American Indians, an advocacy group whose very existence is dependent upon continually playing the victim card, is opposed to these team names. Is this not one of the best examples of unaffected people presuming to be offended on behalf of others? Others who, as a reminder, are not offended!

Readers will note that I have not used the term Native American. The definition of “native” is to be from or born in a certain place, hence anyone born here is a Native American. The same PC movement that presumes to take offense on behalf of others is responsible for changing the meaning and the connotation of the word “native” so as to convey special standing or privilege that is not inherent.

Joseph P. Brignone

Buffalo