Democratic U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum, D-Minn., sent a letter last week urging Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf to take a stand against the Washington Redskins’ name, also stating that it would violate University of Minnesota policy.
The Redskins are scheduled to play the Vikings at the University’s TCF Bank Stadium on Nov. 2. The letter says that allowing the team and its “racist” name on campus would breach the Board of Regents’ equity and diversity policy.
Her letter came a day after the Redskins franchise lost federal protection for its trademarked name. A board from the United States Patent and Trademark Office ruled the name as “disparaging to Native Americans.”
“The time for debate has ended — the name of the Washington franchise is clearly an offensive racial slur,” McCollum wrote in the letter.
She also also sent the letter to University President Eric Kaler, the Board of Regents Chair Richard Beeson and leaders in state government and the Native American community.
McCollum, who co-chairs the Congressional Native American Caucus, pointed in her letter to the board’s policy titled Equity, Diversity, Equal Opportunity, and Affirmative Action.
The policy says the University wants a “diverse, humane, and hospitable” atmosphere, adding that the institution will create an environment “free from racism … and other forms of prejudice.”
Check out Wednesday’s Daily to read more about the University community’s reaction to the letter.