Racism 5? Cleveland Baseball
H^ CHANGE THE NAME
As indigenous peoples (Native Americans) and allies of Indigenous peoples living in Northeast Ohio, we object to the continued racist use of the name "Indians" and degrading symbol "Chief Wahoo" by the Cleveland baseball organization.
How can you call the name "Indians" and "Chief Wahoo" racist?
Racism is defined as "a belief that inherent differences among the various human races determine cultural or individual achievement; a policy based upon or fostering such a belief (Random House Dictionary)
There is no modern anthropological support for the concept of racism defined above. Yet, the term "INDIANS" is a racial term originating not with the peoples themselves, but with the Europeans, who used the term to describe all the Indigenous peoples of this continent. The term "Indians" evokes a homogenous popular image of indigenous peoples: red complexions, feathers, tomahawks, war paint, war whoops... In reality, there are over five hundred federally recognized distinct Indigenous tnbes, nations and groups living with the borders of the United States. They speak over three hundred different languages, and are diverse in cultures, spiritualities, lifestyles, systems of government and physical appearance.
"CHIEF WAHOO" promotes a negative stereotype of indigenous peoples. This red-faced, hook-nosed, grinning buffoon does not resemble any indigenous peoples. The single red feather is a sacrilegious use of what is a sacred object for many indigenous peoples. Although some believe the logo to be cute or inoffensive, it treats an entire group of people as an inane cartoon, in the same manner that Black Sambo promoted stereotypes and thus degraded African Americans and Frito Bandido.