The Cleveland Indians Are Considering a Name Change

The move follows a similar announcement from the Washington Redskins.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File

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Major League Baseball’s Cleveland Indians said Friday night that the team was considering a name change, after the National Football League’s Washington Redskins announced the same thing earlier in the day.

“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,” the Indians said in a statement released Friday night. “With that in mind, we are committed to engaging our community and appropriate stakeholders to determine the best path forward with regard to our team name.”

The Indians have repeatedly faced scrutiny on the matter in recent years, particularly because of their mascot, “Chief Wahoo,” a racist cartoon of a Native American person. The team relegated Wahoo to be its secondary logo in 2014 but still retained him as an official Indians graphic. Last year, it finally removed Wahoo from jerseys but still continued to sell official team merchandise bearing his image. 

The moves come as institutions across industries are being forced to reckon with longtime racist practices and iconography. In addition to the Redskins and Indians, companies like Quaker Oats and B&G Foods have said that they will reconsider their Aunt Jemima and Cream of Wheat branding, which feature antiquated depictions of African Americans, from which white business owners profit.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

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Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

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Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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