Monday, June 26, 2017
Soapbox moralizing

Soapbox moralizing

Get attention without doing anything

Washington Redskins write scathing response to lawmakers who want team name changed

Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., and Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla., told NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell in a letter that the league is on the “wrong side of history” in allowing the Redskins to keep their name, which some see as a slur.

“It is, in fact, an insult to Native Americans,” Cantwell and Cole wrote.

But the team fired back in a statement, saying that Cantwell – who chairs the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs – has better things to do with her time.

“Senator Cantwell should be aware that there are many challenges facing Native Americans, including an extremely cold winter with high energy bills, high unemployment, life threatening health problems, inadequate education and many other issues more pressing than the name of a football team which has received strong support from Native Americans,” the statement said. “Surely, with all the issues Congress is supposed to work on such as the economy, jobs, war and health care, the Senator must have more important things to do,” the statement said.

Another commenter weighs in:

Senator: Why don’t you do your job?

Not only is the crusade against the Redskins not relevant to the real-life needs of Native Americans, but I don’t even think the posturing here is designed to appeal to Native Americans per se. It’s designed to create headlines . . . position the crusading politicians as righteous advocates of forward thinking without requiring them to really do anything of substance.

The easiest political refuge for a liberal politician is the purported battle against offense. . . . It doesn’t even have to be true . . . as long as it can plausibly sound true, a left-wing politician can still preen as a defender of sensitivity.

In a similar vein, one might ask the local easily-upset folks why they want to file lawsuits about a confederate flag image on a state flag; if it’s OK to burn the American flag, then it’s OK to burn the Mississippi flag – so buy one and burn it. Don’t responsible lawyers and politicians have anything productive to do?

But, this sensitivity is uni-directional.

It’s OK to define Christians as things to be wiped out, and women as possessions, but not OK to ask what, exactly, the Muslims have accomplished outside of killing those who disagree or are born female or gay?

The right to speak our thoughts is OK if we agree with the mainstream media – however, biting a cracker into a “gun shape” or displaying a flag with a symbol of a historical conflict – which was a forming event for the state – is “bad?”

We should consider people on their personal merits, and as individuals. The geographical homelands of their ancestors may or may not be of interest to them – it’s generally none of our business. Some people identify with High School graduation class, church, or family ties rather than with ethnic groups. They are all still just people.

A senator who says “I feel offended by the attack on me and my heritage” has at least a little credibility. One who speaks for whole classes of people – classes to which she doesn’t even belong – is grandstanding instead of doing the work we pay her to do.

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