The debate over the Washington Redskins' nickname isn't going away, not even during the climax of the basketball season. The Washington Post reported Tuesday that the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation, a tribe based in California, paid for an anti-"Redskins" commercial that aired to a national audience during Game 3 of the NBA Finals Tuesday night. See an extended version of the commercial below.
The ad might look familiar. The National Congress of American Indians posted the commercial on YouTube before the Super Bowl in February and it has since amassed nearly two million views.
The ad ran during The Finals in seven major markets: Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York, Sacramento, San Francisco and Washington. The tribe says it made a "significant investment" to purchase the air time.
In the commercial, a narrator lists many names that Native Americans call themselves, while different images flash across the screen. Among the names listed: "proud," "forgotten," "Indian," "Sioux," "patriot," "Sitting Bull" and "strong." The commercial ends with the narrator saying "Native Americans call themselves many things, the one thing they don't..." and an image of the Redskins helmet appears.
As The Washington Post points out, Roger "Goodell and [Redskins] team officials have consistently said they don’t believe the name is disparaging and have pointed to a decade-old poll and recent letters to show that many Native Americans support the moniker. Team owner Daniel Snyder has described the name as a 'badge of honor' and has vowed never to change it."
The airing of the ad Tuesday night marked the first time it was shown to such a wide-reaching audience.