Cleveland Indians Baseball Team Set To Ditch Controversial Nickname
Earlier this year, we saw NFL side the Washington Redskins scrap their nickname.
Now it looks like MLB outfit the Cleveland Indians are set to follow suit.
Statement from the organization.https://t.co/IHa68yEQGA pic.twitter.com/gGS6xutSOy
- Cleveland Indians (@Indians) December 14, 2020
The Cleveland-based baseball franchise has announced its plans to ditch the team's 105-year-old nickname and Chief Wahoo logo following years of backlash from fans.
On top of that, it's understood there has been mounting pressure from corporate sponsors, stakeholders and retailers to get the name changed.
The moniker itself has clear ties to Native Indian-Americans - another group who has cited issues regarding the racial undertones in the overall branding.
And after years of criticism, it appears the team's owners have finally decided to listen.
According to The New York Times, the franchise could announce its long-term plans as early as this week.
But while the team has taken the initial step of agreeing to ditch its nickname, don't expect this to be a quick procedure.
Unlike the former Redskins who simply renamed themselves "Washington Football Team" while they come up with a permanent replacement, it's understood Cleveland has opted to stick with its nickname and logo for the 2021 season with the hope of implementing an entire re-brand by the beginning of 2022.
"We'll be the Indians in 2021 and then after that, it's a difficult and complex process to identify a new name and do all the things you do around activating that name," team owner Paul Dolan said.
"We are going to work at as quick a pace as we can while doing it right.
"But we're not going to do something just for the sake of doing it. We're going to take the time we need to do it right.
"We don't want to be the Cleveland Baseball Team or some other interim name. We will continue to be the Indians until we have identified the next name that will hopefully take us through multiple centuries."
Oh no! What is going on? This is not good news, even for "Indians". Cancel culture at work! https://t.co/d1l0C9g6Pd
- Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 14, 2020
Native American groups and countless sports fans have praised the franchise - but not everyone was happy.
Upon hearing the news, United States President Donald Trump took to Twitter (of course) to share his thoughts.
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He said: "Oh no! What is going on? This is not good news, even for "Indians". Cancel culture at work!"
And on social media, it appears people remained fairly divided on the issue too.
The Cleveland Indians just lost half their fan base.
- Brigitte Gabriel (@ACTBrigitte) December 14, 2020
The Cleveland Indians, in the interest of not offending anyone with their team name, will now just be called The Indians.
- Stephen L. Miller (@redsteeze) December 14, 2020
#Cavs Larry Nance Jr. on changing the name of the Cleveland Indians.
"I think it's the right move for a multitude of different reasons." pic.twitter.com/VZR3b6LvW4
- Kelsey Russo (@kelseyyrusso) December 14, 2020
This has been telegraphed since July, when the team first revealed its intention to review the name. You don't publicize that and then end up not doing anything. Much, much more to come. https://t.co/kwe19t8RkL
- Zack Meisel (@ZackMeisel) December 14, 2020
Good call by the Cleveland team @DavidWaldstein @nytmike https://t.co/FdQbrioYeA
- Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) December 14, 2020
I'm begging, I'm pleading, please @Indians call yourself the Cleveland Tribe. Think about how many times on TV and radio they refer to them as the Tribe. Also, look at the definition of Tribe, nothing offensive about it whatsoever. Ask @GVartwork for help with the logo though!
- Cle Food and Brews:beers::baseball::football: (@CleFoodAndBrews) December 14, 2020
Cleveland owner Paul Dolan tells AP that team is dropping name but will continue to play as #Indians in 2021.
No new name chosen yet.
No interim name.
Tribe will not be a future option.
- Tom Withers (@twithersAP) December 14, 2020
Sources confirm the @nytmike and @DavidWaldstein report that the Cleveland Indians will be dropping their nickname. While it's unclear what they will replace it with, the Indians -- who have been called that for more than a century and nearly 17,000 games -- will be no more.
- Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) December 14, 2020
Featured Image Credit: PA
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