On Oct. 9, the Goshen news asked, “Is football team’s name offensive or not?” This was based on the sub-heading, “There is no consensus among Indians on use of ‘Redskins’ as a nickname.” Trying to justify the continued use of an offensive racial slur towards Native Americans is the same pretzel logic used when I hear white people saying, “I hear black using the n-word towards each other. Why can’t I use it?” The answer is, of course, because it is offensive. So the answer to your question is: Yes. The R-word is offensive.
Furthermore, Bill Beck’s childish attempt to trivialize the issue by ridiculing the efforts of those who have been vocal about being offended was lousy journalism at best, and immature ignorance at worst (“Nicknames and kids singing songs after touchdowns aren’t worth the fuss,” Oct. 9). Mr. Beck tried to justify the use of offensive nicknames by stating “we don’t hear public outcry over the Cleveland Indians, Atlanta Braves or Chicago Blackhawks.” Are you new, Mr. Beck? Concerns about those nicknames and the behaviors associated with them (the “Tomahawk Chop”) have been going on for years. Your choosing to ignore them does not negate the legitimacy of the concerns about the names being offensive. It is not about being PC; it is about treating people with respect — a concept that Mr. Beck is obviously not yet mature enough to grasp given the tone of his article.
Surely, The Elkhart Truth can afford a mature and professional journalist to edit its sports pages.