Published on Jul 02, 2020
NCAI Commends Leadership of FedEx in Taking Stand Against the Washington NFL Team’s Racial Slur Mascot, Calls on League’s Other Sponsors and Retailers to Join Movement
WASHINGTON, D.C. | The National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) commends this evening’s formal request by FedEx asking the Washington NFL team to “change the team name.” FedEx’s announcement is particularly noteworthy given that the company is the stadium sponsor of the Washington NFL team, and FedEx CEO Fred Smith owns a minority ownership stake in the team.
“Tonight’s action by FedEx is a wake-up call to all of those who choose to remain in business with the National Football League. In this historic moment and global movement for racial justice, they can no longer sit idly by as the league’s Washington franchise clings to a dictionary-defined racial slur as its mascot. The R-word is destined for the dustbin of history – it’s not a question of if, but when, and that time is now,” said NCAI President Fawn Sharp. “Our nation faces a day of reckoning – we can choose to perpetuate racial inequality and the marginalization of peoples of color, or we can choose to pursue a new path towards a just, righteous, and inclusive society. Removing racist and harmful words, symbols, and imagery like the Washington team’s R-word mascot is a necessary and non-negotiable first step in taking that path.”
NCAI calls upon the major corporate sponsors of the National Football League to join FedEx in calling for the immediate retirement of the Washington team’s name and mascot. It also calls upon the top retailers of NFL merchandise to discontinue selling any and all apparel and related products bearing the team’s name and mascot.
The oldest, largest, and most representative national organization serving tribal nations and citizens, NCAI has been leading Indian Country’s movement to eradicate offensive Native “themed” mascots from sports and popular culture for more than 50 years.
About the National Congress of American Indians:
Founded in 1944, the National Congress of American Indians is the oldest, largest and most representative American Indian and Alaska Native organization in the country. NCAI advocates on behalf of tribal governments and communities, promoting strong tribal-federal government-to-government policies, and promoting a better understanding among the general public regarding American Indian and Alaska Native governments, people and rights. For more information, visit www.ncai.org.