The Washington Football Team eliminated at least one potential option for the team’s new moniker.
Washington’s president Jason Wright said in a release on the team’s website that the new name will not feature anything related to Native Americans. Wright said the new name should bring in more people to support the team and that the new name shouldn’t be offensive to anyone.
“With this in mind, we made it a priority to run an inclusive process to listen to all voices. We have given particular emphasis to engaging, listening and learning from Native American leaders and individuals throughout the country,” Wright said. “This process has exposed to us the very deeply-held personal feelings about our previous imagery and association – and not just the simple, easy-to-categorize ‘who’s for or who’s against’ polling of our old name, but research revealing the psychological effects of Native American team names on American Indian and Alaska Native youth.
“In sum, this engagement demonstrated to us a consensus that moving forward with no ties to Native American imagery is the right path. I am personally and deeply grateful for the Native American community leaders who engaged with us, sharing painful, raw and real stories that persist to this day. Their stories affirmed our decision to move in a new direction in the creation of our new name and identity, and we are proudly forging ahead in this journey with a promise to our community – a promise to continue to be inclusive in our process and collaborative with our fans.”
Wright added the team is not considering the term “Warriors” as a possible nickname replacement.
“In the spirit of that engagement, I want to address a name that has emerged amongst our fanbase, ‘Warriors.’ One might look at this name as a natural, and even harmless transition considering that it does not necessarily or specifically carry a negative connotation. But as we learned through our research and engagement with various groups, ‘context matters’ and that makes it a ‘slippery slope.’
“Feedback from across communities we engaged clearly revealed deep-seated discomfort around Warriors, with the clear acknowledgment that it too closely aligns with Native American themes. Such an embrace of potentially Native-adjacent iconography and imagery would not represent a clear departure that many communities have so forcefully advocated for us to embrace, and that frankly, we set out to do when we started this process a year ago.”
Wright said that because of the culture changes already made within the organization, the new identity of the team will not have any ties to Native Americans.
According to the Washington Post on Saturday, Wright announced that the franchise will reveal its new name and logo in early 2022. The team is also expected to keep their burgundy and gold colors.
Fox News’ Dan Canova contributed to this report.
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