Opinion | Sports

Gabe Galanda: Nike should walk the walk on racist sport mascot

Jacoby Ellsbury, Navajo, one of the ambassadors for the N7 Fund. Photo from Twitter

Attorney Gabe Galanda calls on apparel giant Nike to join the battle against racist mascots in sports:
It is rather hypocritical for Nike to “help Native American and Aboriginal youth recognize their proud history,” yet sell sports merchandise bearing a logo historically associated with bloody Native American scalps when “in-depth studies that show the harm negative stereotypes and ‘Indian’ sports mascots have on Native youth.”

Nike has thus far largely (but not entirely) ducked the Indian mascot controversy. That is in part because although national tribal leaders have lambasted the likes of FedEx for not denouncing the Redskins mascot, they have looked past Nike and N7. Native America has allowed the the world’s #1 athletic apparel company to ignore its own social responsibility to denounce racism in professional sports–especially in the form of branded pro sports apparel.

Indeed, without the prominence of Nike and its ever-lasting Swoosh the Redskins mascot might just fade away.

And beyond a Nike pronouncement against the racist Redskins mascot being the proverbial “right thing to do,” as sports marketing professionals point out, a new Washington NFL team logo “would be a boon for the National Football League and licensees such as Nike Inc., if previous pro-sports team switches are any indication.”

It is time for Nike to walk the walk. They certainly have the shoes in which to do so.

Get the Story:
Gabe Galanda: Nike, N7 Should Get Off the Sidelines re Redskins Mascot (Galanda Broadman Blog 6/30)

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