Free Speech Be Damned! Minneapolis City Council Seeks Ban On Redskins Name For Vikings Game

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City council members in Minneapolis want to outlaw the use of the word “Redskins” when the Washington Redskins play the Minnesota Vikings on Nov. 2 at TCF Bank Stadium, the football stadium on the campus of the University of Minnesota.

This month, the city council instructed city attorneys to examine how illegal it would be to prevent the NFL and the Redskins team from using its logo and its very name during the game, reports.

“I think it’s really important to take a deep look at what we can and cannot do,” councilman Blong Yang declared at a September committee meeting, according to the Twin Cities Daily Planet.

A second councilman, Cam Gordon, observed that city governments may not be able ban anyone from using the word “Redskins” or any Redskins logos. Presumably, Gordon is concerned because the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution strictly forbids any law “abridging the freedom of speech.”

Gordon worries, though, that allowing anyone to use the Redskins name and logo could upset members of local American Indian tribes.

“It’s unfortunate that we have some out-of-town business coming in here [that] is going to be spoiling the good efforts of everybody to have a sensitive city, and a sensitive university and a sensitive stadium, even,” he said, according to the Daily Planet. (RELATED: 12 Trademarks Declared Less Offensive Than Redskins)

Under a lease, TCF Bank Stadium is the temporary home of the Vikings for the next two seasons while a new stadium for the team is under construction.

This summer, Democratic House Rep. Betty McCollum sent a sternly worded letter to Zygi Wilf, the owner of the Minnesota Vikings, declaring that the Redskins are not welcome to play the scheduled Nov. 2 NFL contest. (RELATED: Minnesota Democrat Calls Redskins Game At College Football Stadium ‘Racist’)

“The name of the Washington franchise is clearly an offensive racial slur,” McCollum proclaimed. It’s “so hurtful to our Native American brothers and sisters,” she added. She refused to use the word “Redskins” in her missive.

The Democrat cited a University of Minnesota policy requiring the school to “establish and nurture an environment” that is “free from racism, sexism, ageism, homophobia and other forms of prejudice, intolerance or harassment.”

University of Minnesota president Eric Kaler has also chimed in.

“We are leasing the stadium to the Vikings, but our contract does not allow us to dictate their schedule or who they play,” he admitted, according to EAGnews.

“We have made a request that they do not use that name in the stadium or promotional material,” Kaler meekly added.

Some students and local activists have planned protests of the football game.

The Minneapolis-based American Indian Movement (AIM) is among the activist groups. (RELATED: Rural Cops Charge Man For Desecrated, Upside-Down American Flag)

“We’re no longer going to take it,” AIM founder Clyde Bellecourt told the Daily Planet.

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