December 05, 2015

Redskins and Eskimos: No team nicknames are safe in the age of the perpetually offended

David MenziesMission Specialist
 

Two great Canadian traditions came together at the Grey Cup final this year: football and being offended.

An Inuit man named Natan Obed wrote an editorial about Edmonton’s team nickname, claiming the term "Eskimo" is derogatory.

That got me thinking about all of the other team names that might be put on the chopping block.

It’s a long list which could even include completely manufactured names that bear no resemblance to real persons or animals, living or dead because not even that would stop someone from being offended somewhere.

 

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Comments
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commented 2015-12-05 23:24:25 -0500
Almost 1400 hits! And it’s a sports story. You guys rock!
commented 2015-12-05 21:16:16 -0500
what is an eskimo, a ice cream sandwich? I thought there were only first peoples or aborignals? what the problem with eskimo? confused…
commented 2015-12-05 18:59:18 -0500
Most CFL teams have names that are more than a little lacking in the “grab you and shake you” factor.
commented 2015-12-05 18:58:49 -0500
A few years ago McGill’s “Redmen” team names were being called racist and an insult to Natives. Hmm… Red uniforms, McGill’s colour is red, McGill’s coat of arms is red on white, McGill’s flag is red on white, cheerleaders (yes, they still exist) are red with white, and McGill’s logo is red. But of course its all about the Natives.

On your list of political names for teams, have you forgotten the Montreal Canadians?

From what I have heard,“Eskimo” is Cree for “eater of dog”. An insult to the Inuit, but for a team name, “eater of dog” it shows disrespect for the teams they destroy. How dare they! But then PETA might get upset. So what would be appropriate? Men in Green? Green Men Who Freeze in Winter? Edmontonians?
commented 2015-12-05 16:39:56 -0500
Manny most of us realize it is just one or two kooks and bunch of guilty liberals using them for phony outrage. I would be surprised if any other Inuit took offense to this.
commented 2015-12-05 16:20:53 -0500
Ottawa Senators should change their name. Corruption, lying and cheating should not be held up to children as something to cheer for.
commented 2015-12-05 15:00:53 -0500
$5 says this Natan Obed is on some sort of social assistance paid for by the people that cheer for the Eskimos.
commented 2015-12-05 14:41:52 -0500
Also just for clarity, the first line should be Inuk man*. Inuit is plural, Inuk is singular. Sorry your grammar offended me more than being called an Eskimo….
commented 2015-12-05 14:34:28 -0500
Only a small, minority of Inuit, are opposed to this. As a person, of Inuvialuit decent I find no offence in this name. It it a show of respect if anything. People see our name as a sign of strength, which it is. To quote a one of our former ITK presidents Rosemary Kuptana " I do not care if people call me Eskimo, I have far greater things to worry about." With the course our country is going we all have greater things to worry about.
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10153607685606999&set=a.10150697275306999.446013.583926998&type=3&theater
commented 2015-12-05 14:18:16 -0500
Sorry, wrong city. The Ottawa Rough riders folded in ’96. Goes to show you how much I follow the CFL.
commented 2015-12-05 13:32:07 -0500
Ottawa Rough Riders is out too, Menz – sounds like a Jian Ghomeshi friendly get together. Big Ears Teddy will lumber away from this one and cop a plea deal. Maybe, they could name the teams after inanimate objects like buttons, zippers, handles, cupboards, or wallpaper. Guess not – that’s capitalism.
commented 2015-12-05 13:11:29 -0500
Let’s appease everyone by just calling them football team #1, #2, #3…, hockey team #1,#2,#3…baseball, soccer,rugby,basketball, etc. I’m sure some idiot who came through our school system who can’t count will be offended and insist on team A,B,C… unless he or she also didn’t learn how to read. Screw them all, it’s time to end this PC madness. Grow a pair and grow up.
commented 2015-12-05 12:46:08 -0500
Mr. Menzies,

Just a correction with respect to the Red-Blacks. It is not really a made up name, but refers to the traditional Rob Roy patterned wool shirts the loggers and mill workers wore back in the days when people actually did real work in Ottawa and Gatineau.

Thay said, it should be banned as an offensive term because it celebrates hard work, which would be very offensive to people of the left who don’t know what work is…say like a poster below.
commented 2015-12-05 12:42:02 -0500
Andrew. Pistons should be very problematic to ultra-femmes of the left with respect to rape culture. I think that as a leftist, you would be totally on board with doing away with that pro-rape name.
commented 2015-12-05 12:27:49 -0500
An Inuit man named Natan Obed wrote … must be all that lestoil he was sniffing growing up on some reserve.
commented 2015-12-05 12:23:21 -0500
Andrew, I think you missed the point of this video. Humour.
commented 2015-12-05 12:21:44 -0500
Geez who’d have thunk it? The Ottawa RedBlacks? Surely you jest? Edmonton Eskimos to be 86ed because somebody complained? People don’t seem to have learned that there will always be someone to complain about the name no matter what it is.
commented 2015-12-05 12:07:31 -0500
I was offended at the complete lack of imagination of the team name red blacks. They should rename them the yellow browns and flush them down. Seriously life was much simpler back in the day when it was just shirts and skins. I’m calling shirts. Wait what? Maybe I better rethink that if it means David Menzies (peace be upon him from here out to be abbreviated to peace on him to save time and effort) is going to be a skin). Maybe he should wear his famous Nqiab while playing sporting events and use the team name the “Niqs”. Good story Dave. Always interesting and entertaining.
commented 2015-12-05 11:47:09 -0500
If you don’t understand WHY “Eskimos” is more problematic than “Pistons” then you’ve completely missed the point of the debate.
commented 2015-12-05 11:07:39 -0500
and the madness continues, let me guess money will make him feel better a few million and he will be allright, not to mention his lawyer who has to have his hand in the cookie jar as well. True victims are being shoved aside as they are no longer trendy, the professionally offended top the list.