If your Kansas City football fanaticism rivals Puddy from Seinfeld, I have bad news.
Seinfeld’s Puddy attends Devils playoff game in full face paint via /r/sports https://t.co/tzq4qPiQsv
— Joseph Floyd (@Paola_Rojas_H) April 19, 2018
On Thursday, the town’s NFL franchise — the Chiefs — announced fans are banned from wearing American Indian attire or war paint at Arrowhead Stadium games.
So you can root for the Chiefs…in a venue called Arrowhead…
But a costume?
You can cheer ’em, but you can’t be ’em.
The Daily Wire notes the policy’s a crackdown on an oft-criticized craze:
While fans have been discouraged from wearing these things in the past, the new policy enacts a formal ban as part of the team’s commitment to understanding Native American issues, which it began back in 2014.
So what happens now if you roll up with Mohican marks or festive feathers?
During security screening outside the stadium, you’ll be asked to take it off.
In the meantime — though you’re no Indian — you can chop in the air to cheer the team.
However, that’s under review, too — it may get the…chop.
And if you’re of Japanese descent, and you claim it’s a karate chop?
You may be culturally appropriating yourself.
Moving on, there’s another pounding point to ponder: The Chiefs have a rich tradition, AKA the Drum Deck:
Oh yeah, I got to give the drum a go on the new Drum Deck. @jcharles25 will be here before kickoff this Sunday. The @Chiefs’ leading rusher will be the first drum deck honoree for a regular season game (I’ll be on standby). pic.twitter.com/13M8R1xqLv
— Charlie Keegan (@CharlieKeegan41) September 20, 2019
A little history from 2012:
Borrowing from the video, the drum that was set for a touchdown is now likely to strike out.
The Wire explains:
[T]he Drum Deck may be modified in a way “that maintains a unifying effect between our fans and our players but better represents the spiritual significance of the drum in American Indian cultures.”
The Chiefs also said that recently introduced traditions will remain ongoing, including the Blessing of the Four Directions, the Blessing of the Drum, and the team’s inviting of Native American tribal members “with a historic connection to our region” to participate in the heritage month game. Furthermore, the team is “exploring the creation of a more formalized education program with input from both our local and national partners.”
I’d say the anti-Indian effort’s bound to continue. After all, even without a rain dance: When it rains, it pours.
And the once-great Washington Redskins are now the presently-great Washington….Football Team.
Effective immediately, Washington will call itself the “Washington Football Team”, pending adoption of a new name, sources tell ESPN.
This is not a final renaming and rebranding for team; this is the name it wants to use until pending adoption of a new name in the future. pic.twitter.com/sBs0Uo0ICm
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) July 23, 2020
The Cleveland Indians appear poised to follow.
Call it a pattern: The best way to honor things is to erase reference to their existence.
I haven’t figured out how all that works yet, but I assume I will.
As will you.
Whether you want to or not.
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