The media are furious.
The Poynter Institute, which keeps an eye on all things journalistic, is maintaining a list of media people and institutions who have decided they are so enraged by the idea of calling the Washington Redskins the …well, you know..….that they will no longer participate in this heinous practice.
Then there’s a furious Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. Says the Senator from Nevada of the team’s owner, Dan Snyder:
Snyder says it’s about tradition. I ask, what tradition? A tradition of racism. That’s all that that name leaves in its wake. The writing is on the wall. It’s on the wall in giant, blinking, neon lights.
Got that? The mere name of a football team is about a “tradition of racism.” This is so offensive to Democrats in the US Senate that fifty of them signed a letter to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell demanding the team drop the name.
The Obama-run US Patent Office, prodded by left-wing Native American activists, has agreed, stripping the team of its copyrighted trademark. Says the Patent Office, the mere name of a football team is "disparaging to Native Americans.” Washington Senator Maria Cantwell , one of the signers of that letter to Commissioner Goodell, agreed, chiming in, as reported by ESPN:
Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., told ESPN.com that she expects Wednesday's ruling to be upheld on appeal.
"This puts a big dent in their business model of trying to gain revenue from a disparaging term of slur," she said. "I find it very unlikely that someone is going to overrule the patent office on this. This is a huge decision by a federal agency."
So. Understanding all this?
If you guessed we’re on our way to visit a particularly spectacular cavernous cave of liberal hypocrisy, you would be right. We’ll start with the politicians and move on to the media and all that insufferable, hypocritical self-righteousness. And yes, we’ll take a look at some of these Native American activists - stunningly blatant hypocrites as well.
But there is another name out there not associated with sports - yet both more famous and powerful. A name entwined - with big money at stake - not only with modern Democrats but current-day America: Andrew Jackson.
Yes, that Andrew Jackson. The seventh president of the United States, the hero of the Battle of New Orleans in the War of 1812. The man whose statue sits directly across from the White House in LaFayette Park, and whose familiar image graces the twenty dollar bill, not to mention a portrait in the White House itself. The man who is seen by historians as the co-founder (with predecessor Thomas Jefferson) of the modern day Democratic Party.
But alas Jackson is also the man whose military career had him savaging Indians from the Creek Indian War of 1814 to the Florida Seminoles in 1818 - and more. Jackson was directly responsible for an episode in history known as the “Trail of Tears.” As president he championed and signed the Indian Removal Act of 1830 which provided for the forcible removal of the Cherokee Nation from its lands in Florida and Georgia. Removing them to lands west of the Mississippi. Some 46,000 Native Americans from five tribes - the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, and Seminoles - were forced to leave their native lands during the “removal” , with 4,000 dying along what became known to history as the Trail of Tears. To this day, Andrew Jackson is anathema in the world of Native Americans. Unlike the name of a football team, which by definition is simply a name, Andrew Jackson was not only once solid flesh and blood - he personally is seen in the Native American community as a presidential practitioner of ethnic cleansing and genocide. In the vernacular, as seen here Andrew Jackson is seen by activists as - their words - an “Indian killer.”
So if all these media types - not to mention Senator Reid and his 49 Democrat Senate colleagues, the Patent Office and Native American activists are so offended by the name of a football team - what must they think of someone who is credited with the responsibility for inflicting what today’s activists clearly see as the mass murder of Indians? The hypocrisy here is deep and thick. Let’s wade through the muck.
Andrew Jackson today is routinely celebrated and honored by Reid’s Democratic Party - for Big Money. Jackson’s name - in conjunction with co-founder Thomas Jefferson - is used repeatedly to raise big bucks for Democrats with a parade of “Jefferson-Jackson Day” fundraisers across the nation. Including - make that starting with - Harry Reid.
Now take a deep breath and think like a leftist.
Aside from seeing Jackson as an “Indian killer”, the Left scorns Thomas Jefferson. As here in this 2012 New York Times op-ed by one Paul Finkelman. Finkelman is described in the Times as a “visiting professor in legal history at Duke Law School, is a professor at Albany Law School and the author of “Slavery and the Founders: Race and Liberty in the Age of Jefferson.” Professor Finkelman’s piece described the co-founder of the Democratic Party as “the Monster of Monticello.” He says Jefferson was a “creepy, brutal hypocrite” who “was always deeply committed to slavery, and even more deeply hostile to the welfare of blacks, slave or free. His proslavery views were shaped not only by money and status but also by his deeply racist views, which he tried to justify through pseudoscience.”
OK. Got it.
So what we have here with Jefferson and Jackson, in the view of the Left, are two racists, a slaveholder and an Indian killer. (Jackson too owned slaves, but since no football teams are named for slaves we’ll let it slide.)
In 2010, the headliner of the Clark County, Nevada Jefferson- Jackson dinner was former Vice President Al Gore. It also featured - Harry Reid. The Las Vegas Sun reported it this way:
[Headline: Democrats celebrate successes, raise cash at Jefferson Jackson Dinner]
“Hundreds of Nevada Democrats met in Las Vegas Saturday to raise money for their state and national candidates and to celebrate the political successes of the past year.
The Jefferson Jackson Dinner, which is held most election years, is usually the state party’s biggest fundraiser. The last Jefferson Jackson Dinner was in September 2008 and raised close to $200,000. The 2007 dinner raised more than $300,000.”
The 2007 dinner featured “Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Joe Biden and John Edwards.”
In other words? As the Sun says, “most election years” the Nevada Democrats, with Senator Reid in the lead, hold a huge Slaveowner-Indian Killer Dinner - oops, sorry, Jefferson-Jackson Dinner - and rake in the Big Bucks.
This goes on with Democrats all over the country - every year. With the national Democratic Party and all those fifty Democrat senators so offended by the name “Redskins” collecting even more Big Bucks from national and state dinners named in honor of …according to Native American activists - an Indian Killer.
But there’s more here - and it involves the Native American community itself. Much has been made during the furor over the Redskins name of the support for the change by various Native American leaders and organizations. But a closer look reveals a considerable irony.
New York Democrat Senator Charles Schumer ( a signer of that anti-Redskin letter) is the chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC). In that capacity he addressed Iowa’s Slaveowner-Indian Killer (sorry, Jefferson-Jackson) dinner, an event which had previously headlined then-Senator Obama and both Clintons.
A contributor to the DSCC - whose chairman was participating in an event named for “Indian Killer” Andrew Jackson? That would be Jacqueline Pata, the executive director of the National Congress of American Indians. Really.
Then there’s Suzan Harjo. Ms. Harjo is a longtime Native American activist described in Slate as the “driving force” behind the effort to have the Patent Office strip the Redskins of the rights to their own trademark. Ms. Harjo is a contributor to the Democratic National Committee’s DNC Services Corporation, this being the party that is raking in cash from all over the country at multiples of multiples of events named for the man reviled by Native Americans as an “Indian Killer.” Really.
So in other words, so-called Native American activists are giving money to a party that raises money honoring “Indian Killer” Andrew Jackson. Ya gotta love it.
And oh, yes? Remember the enraged Senator Maria Cantwell of Washington State? She who serves - you can’t make it up - as a member of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee and once served as the chairman? Senator Cantwell, a native of Indiana (hmmm) spent some time back in May of this very year addressing, yes, the Indiana Slaveowner/Indian Killer - oops - Jefferson/Jackson Day Dinner. Really.
Then there’s the media. Ahhh the media. Here’s the Poynter Institute’s current list of the offended who are so enraged by the Washington Redskins that they refuse to use the name. We will focus on a few.
Beginning with the Seattle Times, which said: “The most controversial name in sports won’t appear again in The Seattle Times’ print edition or on the seattletimes.com home pages as long as I am sports editor.” As you have guessed, the paper also endorsed Senator Cantwell, the star at that Indiana Slaveowner/Indian Killer Dinner. But? Not a peep from the paper about that.
Then there’s the Kansas City Star whose public editor wrote back in 2012 that to use the R-word was “patently offensive” and so was out. The Kansas City Star, of course, is located in Missouri. You may recall Missouri as the home state of a president named Harry Truman. Mr. Truman, famously, from Independence. And where is Independence, Missouri? That’s right. It is the county seat of Indian Killer County..uh, sorry…make that Jackson County, Missouri. Named for Jackson before he was president, when Indian-killing along with the War of 1812 had brought him fame. Where this statue http://www.jacksongov.org/content/3273/3285/default.aspx of the old Indian Killer himself is on prominent display. And where Truman himself, a staunch Jacksonian, served as County Judge (executive) before being elected to the US Senate.
Will the Kansas City Star be conducting a campaign to rename Jackson County and remove the Jackson statue? Don’t hold your breath. Similarly, don’t expect much from all those other media institutions and personalities on that Poynter list. No campaigns to strip the name Jackson from counties in their states if they have them, to unhorse Andy from that statue across from the White House or remove him from the twenty dollar bill. One suspects Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu, who signed the anti-Redskins letter, will never be pushing the City of New Orleans to strip the French Quarter of Jackson Square, not only named for the Indian Killer but where another lovely statue of the Indian Killer rides high.
And most assuredly, don’t think Senator Reid or his party will be giving back all those millions raised by exploiting the name and reputation of the “Indian Killer.” Curious, since those dinners co-named for Andrew Jackson are a long party tradition, and you remember what Senator Reid said of a tradition that honored racism.
“I ask, what tradition? A tradition of racism. That’s all that that name leaves in its wake.”
Will the two Native American activists who actually contribute money to the party that exploits the “Indian Killer” for Big Bucks apologize to their followers in the Native American community? Where are the protests about all that…should we call it “blood money”?” - raised by Reid and company? Are these Native American activists ashamed of giving money to a party that is deeply insensitive on this subject?
Question. If the Patent Office can strip the Washington Redskins of their trademark copyright because it is “disparaging to Native Americans”? Should the Federal Election Commission fine the Democratic Party and Senator Reid for accepting millions in campaign dollars by exploiting the name of the “Indian Killer” who wasn’t just “disparaging to Native Americans” but slaughtering them?
The second question here is that if the American Left is determined to take America down the path of Stalinism - where, as seen here, various Communist leaders who fell out of favor were erased from photographs (and Soviet history) where they had once appeared alongside Stalin or Lenin - will they have the guts go all the way? Will these outraged media types be demanding Andrew Jackson disappear from everywhere in America? The twenty dollar bill, the statue across from the White House and the portraits inside it? From the names of counties, cities - even one more NFL team, the “Jacksonville Jaguars” from, uh-oh - Jacksonville, Florida?
The last question? Call it the money question. The Washington Redskins are said to be worth $1.7 billion as a franchise. The Democratic Party raised over a billion dollars in the 2012 election cycle alone, with untold millions incoming from Jefferson-Jackson fundraisers. If Redskins owner Dan Snyder is being deprived of his income via the Patent Office - should not the demand rise from all these unctuous media types and activists for Reid and the rest to give back the money raised at these “Indian Killer” fundraisers? Or as Senator Cantwell might put it: “put a dent in their business model.”?
Don’t hold your breath.