Redskins name controversy: Two local radio stations pull Oneida Nation ads
The debate over the name of Washington's football team continues.
The Oneida Indian Nation, which has emerged as one of the strongest forces in the push to change the team's name, has found itself unexpectedly silenced. It learned Friday that the radio ad it had scheduled to run in Washington this weekend as part of the national "Change the Mascot" campaign will not air.
Washington CBS stations WJFK and WPGC have pulled the ad "based on the amount of on-air debate" the team name issue has created, CBS officials say.
The New York-based Oneida group advertised on both stations at the start of the season.
The ad supposed to run this weekend was titled "Legacy" and questioned the legacy Redskins owner Dan Snyder would leave. In a letter sent to season ticket holders originally obtained by the Washington Post, Snyder makes an emotional appeal for longtime fans to stand up for the team's heritage and tradition.
"When I consider the Washington Redskins name, I think of what it stands for. I think of the Washington Redskins traditions and pride I want to share with my three children, just as my father shared with me," Snyder writes.
"By changing his team’s name Mr. Snyder can create a better historical legacy for himself — one of tolerance and mutual respect, not of racial epithets,” Oneida representative Ray Halbritter says in the ad.
Halbritter scolded CBS for its decision to pull the ad.
"It is unfortunate and un-American that the station permits the team to slander Native Americans on the public airwaves with the use of the r-word, but doesn't permit Native Americans to use the same airwaves to object to the use of a racial slur," he wrote.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and NBC Sports commentator Bob Costas have both recently condemned the name as a slur. Earlier this month, President Obama said in an interview with the Associated Press that team names such as the Redskins offend "a sizable group of people" and if he owned the team, he'd "think about changing it."