City Desk

Pigskins Website on Racist Name: Kids Are Doing It, Too!

Criticism of the Pigskins' other name has been unusually intense over the past few days, with traditional critics of the moniker using a recent symposium on sports team names to write new columns about the Landover, Md.-based franchise. This afternoon, the Pigskins appeared to answer the critique with an article that boils down to "high school kids are doing it, too."

Citing the popularity of something among teenagers, of course, isn't a typical strategy for justifying the behavior of professional football franchises worth hundreds of millions of dollars. But that doesn't stop the Pigskins from passing the buck to 15-year-olds. From the team's website:

"We are very proud of our athletic teams and very proud to be called [racist name of Washington football team]!"

These are the words of Coshocton High School athletic director George Hemming, who serves as the athletic director for just one of the 70 different High Schools in 25 states are known as the [racist name of Washington football team].

[Racist name of Washington football team].com found that there are almost as many schools using the name [racist name of Washington football team] as Cowboys, as only 75 schools use the name Cowboys, and interestingly just 19 use the name Giants.

The unnamed Pigskins writer is bumping up against the point here, yet totally missing it: Professional sports team names inspire high school sports team names. That the Washington Pigskins' name is inspiring other teams to pick up a slur looks like just another argument for changing the name.

Graphic by Carey Jordan.

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  • Supertronic

    I get it. You guys don't like the name Redskins. I agree. Maybe slightly racist. But Pigskins is the best substitute that your creative writers can come up with? Seriously?!? Try harder.

  • Will Sommer

    We had a vote. http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/citydesk/2012/10/18/hail-to-the-pigskins/

    If you've got a better suggestion, would love to hear it. Give it a shot in the comments.

  • DC

    You know who else had youth organizations named after his racist adult organization?

  • Ben

    "You know who else had youth organizations named after his racist adult organization?"

    My buddy Steve? Freakin' racist Steve and his Junior-Steve-Brigade. I told him to cut that shit out.

  • Eric

    I love a bunch of transplants deciding to be offended and take it upon themselves to rebrand our football teams. One area where pre-gentrified sensibilities should prevail.

    -A native

  • Jane

    Pigskins is kinda embarrassing. I think "Scandals" is brilliant.

  • Nketia

    It's a shame that we as a people have become so insensitive to Indian Country, our own brothers and sisters who, too, make up the tapestry of this world. It's sort of like bullying. The First People tell us that we are insulting them by calling them names and depicting them negatively. It's totally demeaning. When our children cry out to us for help because other children are calling them names and bullying them, we call foul!!! Ready in an instant to take up for them. We must start respecting each other on all levels! It's the Godly thing to do. It's called "Love thy Neighbors!" The feuding in this world would cease to exit if we would fundamentally respect each other's cultural differences. Renaming a sports team for the sake of humanity should never make a difference in how you feel about your footbal team or any other team for that matter. Especially if it is insulting to a people. Come to think of it... it would certainly make you a better people for it!

  • Art

    Nothing furthger from Supertronic?? S/he was so outraged. I thought for sure s/he would have gotten back with a suggestion by now.

  • Mike Madden

    @ Eric:

    Renaming the team was my idea. I was born in D.C., as was my dad, who played clarinet in the team's marching band in 1964, and his dad. This has nothing to do with "transplants" or gentrification, it has to do with not using a racially offensive term for an institution so many of us love (despite how we may differ with ownership).

  • name

    http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/002961.html

    Turns our native American anti-Redskin provocateurs are lying dickbags.

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