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The Washington Football Team doesn’t have a new nickname yet.
It’s leaning into its rebranding, regardless.
After decades of taking a hard-line stance against dropping a racial slur as a nickname, the Washington Football Team is now reveling in its absence on social media.
On Wednesday, the team’s Twitter page celebrated its new helmets, which have replaced a profile of a Native American with jersey numbers.
Team shares video of branding overhaul
On Thursday, it shared video of workers stripping a team facility of its former branding, including the old logo, its iconic “HTTR” slogan and signage reading “Fight for old D.C.,” the closing line of its former fight song that will either be completely scrapped or have to undergo a massive overhaul.
What will happen to ‘HTTR?’
Judging by the about-face seen here, the old fight song is a goner, regardless of where the team eventually lands on a nickname and mascot.
As to be expected, not everyone was pleased with the post. The social media team responded to a fan of the old ways with a promise of more to come.
Stark contrast to Dan Snyder’s stance
It’s a startling change of tone after team owner Daniel Snyder stood firm for more than 20 years on maintaining the old nickname despite obvious reasons and pressure to change.
“We’ll never change the name,” Snyder said in 2013. “It’s that simple. NEVER — you can use caps.”
America’s race reckoning in the aftermath of George Floyd’s homicide while in custody of the Minneapolis police changed the definition of “never” for Snyder last month. The public and financial pressure simply became too much to continue to tolerate a racial slur as an NFL team nickname.
So the old name is gone.
The old franchise owner remains, though. A new coat of paint isn’t going to wipe the problems that plague the franchise. Not as long as Snyder’s still around.
But if you’re going to take the dramatic step of dropping a controversial, 87-year-old nickname, it’s probably best to do so with gusto.
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