Rick Snider: D.C. Council not offering a serious solution to Redskins' name controversy

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The Redtails ... seriously?

The Tuskegee airmen of World War II were heroes, and if this was Alabama, then naming a local team after them would be a fine idea.

But this is Washington, home of the Redskins. Nothing is going to change that for many years. Not some nonsensical non-binding resolution by the D.C. Council calling for the team to be called the Redtails. It has no legal enforcement and essentially says, "Please change the name or we'll be upset."

Council member David Grosso is well-intentioned but quite naive about the value of his proposed resolution. It will certainly be passed by lawmakers and everyone will congratulate themselves for being so kind, so thoughtful. District residents should respond by telling council members to get to work on something that really matters because a name-change resolution is a waste of time.

Seriously, the day the Redskins talk about returning to the city for a new stadium in 2027, the council will do anything -- and I mean anything -- to make it happen. Saying otherwise is lying to themselves. Owner Dan Snyder will make the name change non-negotiable and that will be the end of it.

This isn't to say the Redskins shouldn't change their name. In the next generation, it will happen when the public feels ready. It's just not any time soon.

Whether the Redskins' name is offensive enough to force a change hasn't been proven. An Associated Press-Gfk poll showed 79 percent of 1,004 adults nationwide say the name should remain. Eleven percent say the team's name should be changed, eight percent were unsure and two percent didn't respond.

Four of five people agreeing on anything is a mandate in this country, where gaining 52 percent often wins the presidency. Hopefully those polled weren't all dentists, so we can believe the results.

Opponents will cite the fact that 79 percent favoring the name is a 10-percent drop since the last poll in 1992. Really, you want to compare figures from 21 years ago? It's not like America has remained the same on issues since then. The country is a more liberal and tolerant place in terms of treating everyone fairly, and rightfully so. Comparing opinions two decades apart is playing political football with numbers. The only ones that matter are today's digits.

Ironically, and maybe that word can't be used to describe politicians anymore, Grosso told ESPN he'll still attend Redskins games. If he's so upset over the name, then he shouldn't support what he believes is a racist organization. Same goes for Mayor Vincent Gray, who is a regular in the FedExField luxury boxes.

Grosso should work on building a new soccer stadium if he wants to be productive. Proposing a non-binding resolution for something that won't happen is just wasting taxpayer's time and money.

Examiner columnist Rick Snider has covered local sports since 1978. Read more on Twitter @Snide_Remarks or email rsnider@washingtonexaminer.com.

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