For several years, the Washington Redskins, Atlanta Braves, Cleveland Indians and several other sports teams have been accused of team names that are insensitive to Native Americans. In a historic agreement, each team will change their official name and mascot simultaneously. The date for this change has not yet been agreed-upon.
Sports Teams Come Together
In some cases that will even include discontinuation of gestures, such as the Tomahawk Chop.
This will involve a complete overhaul of team marketing, including their social media presence. As previously mentioned, the logos are expected to change. However, the team colors will not.
Team jerseys, t-shirts, and other authorized clothing and novelty items with the current team names and logos will be discontinued. No decision has been made on how existing items that fans have already purchased and received will be addressed. The teams are considering a mandatory recall.
Additional Teams Considering the Move
Some groups also oppose the use of animals for mascots or team names. Dozens of college and professional teams would be affected by such a change. If this is also mandated for K-12 teams, the churn in team names could be monumental.
Naturally, this would be a boon for companies involved in any way with team logos. Industries likely to experience a windfall include:
- Sports uniforms
- Gifts and Novelties
- Marketing and advertising
Many social and political forces are converging. The Trump presidency has amplified sensitivities for some.
Increasing concern about head injuries in football lead some to question whether football is safe to play at all. As a result, since the teams are considering name changes, they are considering a change of sport as well.
Some players have begun to ask whether this fundamental change provides an opportunity to switch to a less violent sport that doesn’t involve cleats and heavy pads. Now that beach volleyball is an Olympic sport, and involves only the skimpiest of uniforms, the teams have no choice but to consider changing their sport at the same time they change their identity.