Packers opponent inspires new calls for racially tolerant mascots

Green Bay, Wisconsin (AP) 10-07

Ahead of a state hearing during October on racially insensitive sports mascots, members of Wisconsin tribes decried the Washington Redskins’ name and logo as the NFL team played the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field.

“The consensus is that the most egregious violations are with this name, Redskins, because it has the ugliest history,” said Clif Morton, a New London resident who organized a conference in Oneida addressing race-based stereotypes and their related psychological effects.

“It was always used as a disparaging term. It represented genocide of whole tribes. It represents the worst of the worst.”

Richie Plass, a member of the Menominee and Stockbridge-Munsee tribes, remembers when he was typecast as the mascot of his high school – then the Shawano Indians – almost 30 years ago.

Since then, many schools have moved away from using native American mascots, but Plass wonders whether the action only masks the broader problem.

“I think they’ll change, but I’m not sure the mindset will change,” he said, referring to attitudes he said run deeper than the superficial use of names.

Plass and other activists protested Washington’s name and mascot, which they say undermines native Americans with hurtful stereotypes.