Oneida Indians schedule meeting with United Nations regarding Redskins nickname
A meeting between the Oneida Indian Nation and human rights representatives of the United Nations is scheduled to take place on Friday to discuss the Redskins nickname, according to Erik Brady of USA Today.
“Oneida Nation representative Ray Halbritter is set to speak with Ivan Simonovic, Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights at the U.N. in New York, just as the National Football League is preparing for its seminal event, the Super Bowl, with events in New York and northern New Jersey all next week,” Brady reports.
Redskins owner Daniel Snyder said the Redskins name was “a badge of honor” in a letter to fans in October, and the team questioned the U.N.’s decision on Friday.
“Given all the wars around the world, starvation, famine and the nuclear proliferation problems the U.N. is dealing with, surely they have more important things to worry about than a football’s team name that is supported by the vast majority of the American people,” team spokesman Tony Wyllie told USA Today.
Halbritter and the U.N. didn’t see it that way.
“I am very heartened by this opportunity to have a dialogue … about this important moral, human and civil rights issue,” Halbritter said. “It’s very encouraging to see national and now international leaders potentially recognizing the harmful impacts of using this term that denigrates Indian peoples.”
Added U.N. human rights officer Giorgia Passarelli in an email: “Beside the Human Rights Council, the matter is relevant in the context of the work that the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights has been doing on the issue of racism in sports.”