The NFL’s Washington Redskins have dealt with criticism over their team name for years, but the franchise finally decided to retire their nickname for one that will be perceived as less offensive. The MLB’s Cleveland Indians, who’ve also been under fire, plan to do the same.
In the year 2020… change comes quickly, especially when it relates to things like racial discrimination.
And now it appears to be the Braves’ turn, as it too has been condemned for quite some time. However, the attacks began to heat up during last year’s NLDS versus the Cardinals, when pitcher Ryan Helsley — a member of the Cherokee Nation — went public with his dislike for all things Braves.
So what happened this past weekend really shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. In fact, it probably could’ve been done several months ago.
The Atlanta Braves have removed a “Chop On” sign near their ballpark and are still considering their stance on the fans’ tomahawk chop chant that is considered offensive by some Native Americans.
— AP Sports (@AP_Sports) July 20, 2020
And I don’t say that because I agree with the removal of the sign or the chant. Personally, I’ve always enjoyed the Tomahawk Chop. “The Chop” has been part of the Braves my entire life, and I know most of us have never looked at it as anything derogatory or racist.
But we knew something was going to have to be done, and if changing the team’s 2020 slogan from “Chop On” to “For the A” is what makes folks happy, then so be it. At least the Braves have guaranteed that their name will stay, sending a statement to their season-ticket holders in July that claims, “We will always be the Atlanta Braves.” Granted, until recently, the Redskins and Indians had no intention of changing their name, either… but here we are.
So if you’re an angry Braves’ fan… relax. This day was coming, and you haven’t been paying attention if this comes as a surprise to you. At least for now, the Braves are still the Braves, and the Tomahawk Chop is technically not dead. But believe me… “The Chop” will certainly die soon.