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The Cleveland Indians are reportedly preparing to announce a name change this week after years of criticism.
President Donald Trump, of course, isn’t happy about it.
Donald Trump slams Cleveland’s name change
Trump, per usual, took to Twitter on Sunday night shortly after Cleveland’s upcoming name change was first reported.
“Oh no! What is going on?” he wrote while sharing a link to a New York Post article. “This is not good news, even for ‘Indians.’ Cancel culture at work!”
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
Trump’s reaction is not surprising whatsoever.
He had previously defended the franchise’s name, along with the Washington Football Team’s old name — the NFL franchise dropped its racist nickname last summer after extreme pressure and backlash — in July by claiming that the nicknames are that of “strength, not weakness.”
Cleveland has gone by “Indians” since 1915, though has felt pressure from Native American groups and others to drop the nickname, which many feel is insensitive and racist. The franchise had dropped its old Chief Wahoo mascot and logo in 2018 after the league said it was “no longer appropriate.”
The team had announced in July that it would consider changing its name amid a widespread social justice movement in the country.
“We are committed to making a positive impact in our community and embrace our responsibility to advance social justice and equality,” the team said then in a statement. “Our organization fully recognizes our team name is among the most visible ways in which we connect with the community … The recent social unrest in our community and our country has only underscored the need for us to keep improving as an organization on issues of social justice.”
It’s unclear when Cleveland will officially announce the name change, or what it will change its name to.
The decision, however, will undoubtedly add pressure to other franchises with similar names — whether Trump likes it or not.
Georgia Senators oppose changing Atlanta Braves
Though it’s almost certainly just a campaign ploy, Georgia Republican Senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue issued a joint statement on Monday afternoon opposing any potential effort to rename the Atlanta Braves.
Both Loeffler and Perdue are involved in runoff elections in the state — the result of which will determine which political party controls the Senate.
“We adamantly oppose any effort to rename the Atlanta Braves, one of our state’s most storied and successful sports franchises,” they said in a statement. “Not only are the Braves a Georgia institution — with a history spanning 54 years in Atlanta — they’re an American institution. The Braves’ name honors our nation’s Native American heritage, which should not be erased — and under no circumstances should one of the most celebrated teams in sports cave to the demands of the cancel culture and the radical left.”
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