Much ado has been made about team nicknames which are denigrating or derogatory toward groups, races and cultures. Rampant purists have suggested that such offensive name be changed for the good of our societal progression. Knowing that anyone can find fault with just about everything, we do aim to please the largest number of pundits.
What is behind this invention of offense to Native American team names primarily by non-Native Americans? You won’t hear an Irishman or a Greek complaining about the Fighting Irish or the Spartans – unless they lost that week! Naturally, universities have attempted to appease the masses by renaming their teams “orange storm” or “Pride” but even the term “Rainbow Warriors” has been demonized. What’s next? Will someone have a problem with using the term “Unicorn” because it is a fictional creature?
This use of feigned victimization in order to cause change in someone else’s behavior reminds me of the experiment with monkeys who have to push a lever to get a banana flavored pellet. The result being that the monkeys learned to use the lever increasingly more often to increase their gratification.
It seems that those who can’t master their own lives find gratification in causing change in the lives of others, inconsiderate of the consequences, in order to appease their own self-pity. This is a sign of emotional immaturity that should not be encouraged.
Following is a list of suggestions that should satisfy all PC mongers but may pose problems to fans struggling to [barely]recognize their teams. With a little thought and some helpful hints you should be able to decipher most of these. Some of them might be difficult to squeeze onto a jersey or fit neatly on a banner but that is someone else’s problem!
Atlanta Predatory Raptors of Exceptional Speed and Intelligence
Baltimore Omnivorous Avian Scavengers revered as a spiritual figure or god – OR Fictional Literary Creatures Proclaiming “Nevermore”
Buffalo Mailed Notices of Incurred Debt (or extinct American beasts)
Carolina Puma Concolors
Cincinnati Large, Striped Carnivorous Mammals – or Residents of the northeast region of the Indian Subcontinent in South Asia
Chicago Securities Traders in a Declining Market – or Famous Picnic Crashers at Jellystone
Cleveland Team of Earthen Color (or Ivy League University in Providence, Rhode Island.)
Dallas Western-style Laborers or Cattle Rustlers… also available in Urban variety
Detroit Large, Carnivorous Nocturnal Cats
Green Bay Meat Industry Workers. Also a term likely used in Prison Recreational verbiage.
Indianapolis Sexually Immature Foals or part of Houston Astros original franchise name
Jacksonville Melanistic Medium-Sized Predatory Wildcats – or “Puma yagouaroundi” for short!
Miami Mammalian Sea-Dwelling Victims of Gill Netting
Minnesota Plundering Norsemen – famous for funerals and stylish headwear
New England Zealous Revolutionaries – hint political party in New Zealand OR Roland Emmerich/Mel Gibson flick from 2000
New Orleans Pious Figures of Spiritual Patronage (Archbishop answers to them) and big fans of jazz on Bourbon Street – especially during Mardis Gras. The fleur de lys is associated with Areas of the world that were once under French monarchic rule – such as Louisiana; also for Boy Scouts and means “flower of life”
Oakland’s Privateer Party-Crashers… brand of British crisps…elite unit established by the United States Marine Corps during World War II… Confederate guerrillas in the American Civil War… unit of British dragoons active during the American Revolution… Turkish terrorist organization
Philadelphia Endangered National American Symbols (Signifies power, birth and renewal but also in need of a dose of Monoxodyl)
San Francisco Precious Metal Enthusiasts, circa mid-19 century American Pacific Gold Rush
Seattle Ocean-Going Birds of Prey (a.k.a. SH-60/MH-60 twin turbo shaft engine, multi-mission United States Navy helicopter based on the airframe of the United States Army UH-60 Black Hawk and a member of the Sikorsky S-70 family)
St. Louis Large-Horned Cloven-Footed Mountain Beasts (not to be confused with form of computer data storage)
Tampa Bay Economically Challenged Sea Captains historically of late 17th Century Caribbean origin but any scurvy-hobbled marauder will do!
Washington Native Americans OR Pejorative generic term historically used to refer to indigenous Americans and is seldom used publicly (Hint: book by James Fenimore Cooper)
Can’t we all just get along? It’s FOOTBALL people!
About the Author
Written by Christopher Rowe
Contributing writer Comcast Sports, NY Times contributing stringer 1996-2000, Contributing writer Yahoo Sports (2001 World Series). Contributing writer Newsday Long Island (1992-1994, Jets Training Camp) and Newak Star Ledger. Freelance Copywriter, Editor/Founder Atlantic Times Weekly (1993-2003) fantasy football magazine, produced screenwriter and general humorist. Hofstra University grad, Marist College honorary alum, Salesian; Purveyor of the Value and Valor of Philadelphia Eagles 1960 NFL Championship; Adrent believer that Eagles could have won Super Bowl XV...and Super Bowl XXXIX...plus modern decade of Eagles 5 NFC Championships... Believer in the Broad Street Bullies and the 1983 Sixers... Witness to Philadelphia Phillies World Series championships 1980 & 2008, Suffered Phillies first pro sports team to reach 10,000 losses,witnessed "1980 Cardiac Kids," 1983 "Wheeze Kids," 1993 "Macho Row" and many, many, many not-so-memorable seasons in-between... until the Philadelphia Baseball Renaissance of 21st Century, Five NL East division titles 2007-2011, 3 NLCS appearances 2008-2010, 2 consecutive World Series berths 2008 & 2009. 2008 World Champions of baseball [miss ya Harry and Richie]; "collector" of MLB ballparks (42 stadiums including 15 which are gone); Fantasy Football & Baseball player since 1992. Always a sports fan... Tenui Nec Dimittam Contact me firstname.lastname@example.org