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The Indians are still peddling the bogus Louis Sockalexis story

Nov 5, 2013, 1:00 PM EDT

Progressive Field

If you ask most people how the Cleveland Indians got their name, they will tell you it has something to do with Louis Francis Sockalexis, a Native American who played 94 games across three seasons for the Cleveland Spiders at the end of the 19th century. The story goes that the team was given that name in honor of Sockalexis, as he was allegedly a fan favorite or fun-loving or something like that.

It’s total bunk, by the way. The Indians own media guide notes that sportswriters at the time — 1915 — surveyed fans for a name and the Indians stuck, most likely because the 1914 Braves were seen as a surprising and inspiration team and others wanted to ape them to some degree. There’s also the little fact that Sockalexis hadn’t been associated with the team in any way and that he died in his early 40s as a very sick and mostly forgotten alcoholic two years before the name was changed.

But it sure is a nice story. Sort of like the Abner Doubleday baseball-creation myth.

Except the Indians, at least in some instances, still believe it. Or else want fans to believe it. What else explains a letter from the team to a fan who wrote them complaining about Chief Wahoo and the Indians’ use of Native American iconography. You can read it over at Cleveland Frowns, who keeps close track of all Chief Wahoo-related things.

If the Indians want to keep their name and their mascot and everything that goes with it, there is nothing that can stop them. They are a private business and they can do whatever they’d like. If they actually believed that the choices they made in this regard were good ones, however, they wouldn’t resort to blatant lies in order to justify them.

  1. stex52 - Nov 5, 2013 at 1:13 PM

    So, Craig…………………do you have an opinion on this item?

  2. thomas844 - Nov 5, 2013 at 1:37 PM

    While we are on this topic, I believe the Pirates need to change their team name and mascot. The stereotypical caricature of a snarling pirate with an eye patch and bandana along with the parrot for the mascot is very offensive to the Somalian pirates who are trying to make a living.

    • The Common Man - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:14 PM

      The name predates the Somali pirates you’re joking about and it pretty clearly isn’t representative of that particular group. So not only aren’t you funny, but your satire sucks.

      • skids003 - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:42 PM

        I thought it was funny. Be tolerant Commonman.

      • johanna884 - Nov 5, 2013 at 8:46 PM

        Really? …”So not only are not you funny, but your satire sucks.” A sentence with a double negative and illogical syntax….

        But, since we’re reading Common Man’s drivel, how about an opinion from a New Mexican Jicarilla Apache … that Indian being … me.

        I root for teams because I like the players or the city or whatever, and I don’t give a crap about the logo or picture or whatever. But I WISH WHITE PEOPLE WOULD STOP MAKING ARGUMENTS ON “BEHALF OF MY POOR MISTREATED INDIAN BROTHA” and quit making political gains off your self-righteousness.

        And say hello to Obama who just had the Chicago Blackhawks to the White House and said nothing about their name. But then he jumps on the renaming of the Redskins…. BS from all you, especially you Common Mancraper…

    • nategearhart - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:25 PM

      “Pirate” is an occupation. “Indian” is not. Why the hell do people struggle with this kind of thing so damn much?

    • chinahand11 - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:35 PM

      I have to say that abuse of the parrot is really pissing me off.

      signed,

      PETA

  3. vndam1 - Nov 5, 2013 at 1:38 PM

    I am so sick and tired of this “story” that the media is trying to create. Hey, as an Irishman, I am offended by Notre Dames Fighting Irish and little leprechaun mascot. The mascot insinuates that all irish are short little gingers with big ears, and the name “Fighting Irish” insinuates that i as an irishman is violent, so Im offended and demand they change it. Sounds unreasonable right? Maybe I’m being over sensitive perhaps??

    • 18thstreet - Nov 5, 2013 at 1:58 PM

      I’m sorry you’re offended.

      Julie Florie is Notre Dame’s director of public relations. You can reach her here: (574) 631-7031

      Please let us know how the call goes.

    • The Common Man - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:01 PM

      No, but you are being an idiot.

      Notre Dame, largely comprised of Irish Catholics at the time, embraced and spread the nickname. Also, unless you are a leprechaun, I don’t know why you would be offended by the Notre Dame mascot. On the other hand, Native Americans have never owned the Cleveland Indians or been part of the management of that team. Nor have they had any prominent Native players. Nor were they asked about the nickname or the mascot, a dopey, grinning, Sambo-esque caricature of real groups of people. And therein lies the difference.

      • johanna884 - Nov 5, 2013 at 8:59 PM

        “Notre Dame, largely comprised of Irish Catholics at the time, embraced and spread the nickname”

        Ok, Common Man, your gig is up — you are an Official Idiot …. “at that time”…. Notre Dame was never singularly composed of Irish Catholics, any more than Duquesne University was full of Jesuit students….

        You’re an angry little man, Common Man, full of lies and spreading hate. Last time I read your racist and nasty blog ….

      • ezrway12 - Nov 6, 2013 at 1:31 PM

        Common Man- I demand you change your name, it insinuates you speak for all of us
        and frankly I find your views to be offense and nearsighted. I like to think of myself as a “Common Man”, in doing so I realize there is not just one set of rules we all can live by so
        we have to be flexible especially when forcing our beliefs on others. I personally like Chief Wahoo, I don’t believe it is or is intended to be offensive. When I see it I think of one thing and one thing only my beloved Cleveland Indians….

      • jforquer - Nov 6, 2013 at 2:03 PM

        Actually johanna884, your whole post is wrong. 1. Comparing Irish Catholics and Jesuits is wrong, one is an ethnic group, the other is an order of priests, comprised of many ethnicities from around the world. 2. Duquesne isn’t even a Jesuit University, so why would there be “Jesuit” students there? 3. Common Man didn’t say Notre Dame was “singulary” Irish-Catholic. But “largely”, There is a difference. There were many ethnicites at Notre Dame at the time. The coach when the name “FIghting Irish” was adopted was a Norwegian Lutheran.

      • johanna884 - Nov 6, 2013 at 11:39 PM

        JForquer – You and your btch Commom Man have the nasty misguided habit of throwing red herrings over analogies because you’d rather just argue about meaningless crap that no one wants to hear about, because you can’t win any other type of argument.

        But you’re so damn dumb that your third point against me is in fact against Common Mancrap – being that the name Fighting Irish was never selected by the largely (or predominately or singularly or the majority, whatever) the point is CM posited ND used Fighting Irish because the “large number” of students were Irish- which you AND I have posited is not true.

        And if you want to pick tooth picks out of your ase over Catholic ethnic groups v. Catholic priests, the point is if CM says Notre Dame uses Irish in its nickname because Irish Catholics went there, thus Duquesne University should use something Catholic in its nickname, because – in CM’s logic – the ethnic/religious/racial makeup of the student body determines the selection of the school’s mascot.

        My sister graduated from Duquesne Law School, and Jesuit priests were the spiritual advisers on campus, as Duquesne is not Catholic, but Spiritan:

        http://www.duq.edu/about/centers-and-institutes/spiritan-studies

        Mascots of Catholic Universities: Georgetown Hoyas, Villanova Wildcats, Layola Wildcats,

        Mancrap makes statements like”the Indians own media guide” but does not gives us a link to prove this is true, any more than “at the time Notre Dame, largely composed of Irish Catholics” …

        I am Jicarillo Apache that roots for the Dallas Cowboys because they’re the closest team to central New Mexico. And, as my father rode on the Indian Cowboy Circuit, we can all relate to being cowboys:

        http://indianrodeonews.com/prca-indian-cowboys.html

        So give the mascot crap a rest and quit using Indians for your personal gains….

      • The Common Man - Nov 7, 2013 at 12:15 AM

        “You and your btch Commom Man”

        Hey, looks like the “i” is stuck on your keyboard. You should get that fixed. Otherwise, people might not know what you meant to type.

    • shaggylocks - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:10 PM

      To quote the good folks over at Native Appropriations:

      “A leprechaun isn’t a real person, and there’s not a contemporary community of Leprechauns who are undergoing active colonialism and actively fighting misrepresentations. I totally feel for all those leprechauns living in poverty while the US government continues to systematically marginalize them through ongoing policies that ignore their inherent sovereignty and Indigenous rights to the land. While the Irish may have had a history of oppression in the US, no one can argue that they are still marginalized or would be categorized as anything other than part of the majority culture.

      If that’s too wordy?

      Dude, Leprechauns aren’t real people.

      • skids003 - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:46 PM

        vndam1, don’t you love their logic and spin? Unbelievable.

        The leprechaun may not be a “real” person, but it’s a caricature of the Irish, and might be offensive to them, as a group that is overly aggressive or something like that. So I see his point.

      • asimonetti88 - Nov 5, 2013 at 5:26 PM

        Leprechauns are totally real people. If I learned nothing else from my Saturday morning cartoons, leprechauns are real people that are constantly trying to keep their magically delicious lucky charms away from thieving children.

    • tedwest - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:39 PM

      “i as an irishman is violent”

      As a fellow Irishman, I is offended too!

    • tfbuckfutter - Nov 5, 2013 at 3:51 PM

      I’d like Notre Dame better if their logo was a priest molesting a leprechaun.

      Stereotypes are fun and everyone can enjoy them.

  4. NYTolstoy - Nov 5, 2013 at 1:45 PM

    I might be in the super minority but I love the name and the chief Wahoo including the mascot who used to have the big cigar just for the absurdity of it lol I’m very political about things but if the fan base doesn’t complain then no one else should fight for this. Yes it was racist but maybe we should look at the bigger issue. You know, having less then a million native Americans left and most living in poor broken down areas and alcoholism at a very high level. But no let’s ignore the horrid destruction that was said race and make the Indians change there names, that will fix everything. In essence we should look at more critical issues but if they were to change their names they should go back to the cleavland spiders. Loved that name, besides they already got rid of the mascot and the picture of the red Indian. (man I know I sound very insensitive but its not what I was going for, It just seems to be something smaller then people make it out to be)

    • The Common Man - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:05 PM

      So how the fanbase feels should be the measuring stick here? What if the fanbase thought it was cool to dress in blackface? What if the fanbase was ok with beating up any Tigers fans who attended a game in Cleveland?

      I think what has been done to Native Americans in the United States by its government has been shameful, and I do not think that changing the Indians mascot will reduce the poverty and the symptoms of poverty that are plaguing America’s reservations. But just because solving this problem doesn’t solve all of the problems isn’t a reason to ignore this problem. Good done for good’s sake is still good done.

      • ezrway12 - Nov 6, 2013 at 1:43 PM

        What problem needs to be solve here, it’s an opinion. Changing the Cleveland Indians name will not solve any “problems”, It will just give people one less thing to complain about. Changing doesn’t do one thing socially, economically in fact may even be one step closer to sweep those issues under the proverbial carpet.

  5. Kevin Gillman - Nov 5, 2013 at 1:50 PM

    Craig, did it ever occur to you that Chief Wahoo is very profitable, not just around the states but around the world? Ask Bruce Drennan about his trips to Mexico, and handing out Chief Wahoo hats to the locals. Even if its off the air, ask him about it.

    • paperlions - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:06 PM

      How is handing out free hats in Mexico profitable?

      If you travel around Latin America or Africa, you will see all kinds of hats and shirts from MLB and NBA teams that proclaim them to be the champions when the didn’t win. That pre-made stuff has to go someone, and mostly it goes to charity. Just because people will wear something that was free doesn’t mean they would pay for it.

      Oh, and nice argument. Slavery is really profitable too, but I doubt you would use that as an argument for its continued support (not that any team appears to be on the verge of calling themselves the Sex Slaves). A racist caricature is still racist no matter how profitable it may be.

      • Kevin Gillman - Nov 5, 2013 at 3:59 PM

        @paperlions, let me ask you this question. If you’re offended by Chief Wahoo, and the Indians organization does indeed get rid of the cartoon character, then what? Then what shall we get rid of? I just think there needs to be higher priorities here. For one, in another sports world, there is some dangerous hazing going on, not just with Miami, but it’s all around NFL. I am all for a little ribbing, but when you literally beat down another man just for the sheer entertainment, or leave racist remarks on the voicemail, threateing to kill the family, then I think NFL needs to outlaw that LONG before Indians get rid of a character.

        Again, I am saying character. A cartoon character, if you’re offended by that, then don’t buy the hat. Its that simple, we should have far worse things to fix then a cartoon character. Of which I might add, a group of Native Americans are not bothered by that at all, then again, some are.

        But we also live in a society where our government is forcing us to pick up insurance that won’t cover us if we reach a certain age group, or we are sick with Cancer, or other diseases. So much so that the medical field is up in arms about this. NOW that should be fought.

        Good, hard working men and women are losing their jobs, simply because corporations don’t know how to effectively run these businesses, people are looking behind their shoulders, waiting to be let go, people are losing mortgages, and then become homeless. There are third world countries out there that are being run communist, and socialists.

        So isn’t it nice that you and Craig can venot out your frustrations over a cartoon character, whether you like it or not?

        But hey, who cares about those other problems, when we have to fight to get rid of Chief Wahoo.

      • historiophiliac - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:23 PM

        As if paper can’t multi-task his outrage. They so underestimate you, dude.

      • paperlions - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:36 PM

        I’m not even outraged, I am too numbed to the overtness of “casual” background racism/sexism to be outraged. What cracks me up is the complete and utter lack of respect that people don’t recognize as they belittle peoples they’ve never met.

        I am too old now to be outraged by willful ignorance. How can you be outraged by something so common and ingrained in a species?

        To be willfully ignorant and to do so defiantly and loudly in the face of fact is to be human. Not quite as eloquent as “to err is human”, but no less true.

  6. babyfarkmcgeezax - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:03 PM

    Craig still supports the Atlanta Braves, so maybe he could do us all a favor and spare us his faux outrage over Cleveland and get back to searching for that popcorn he couldn’t find a few months ago.

    • The Common Man - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:09 PM

      I don’t understand a lot of things here, including A) why you think the Braves are analogous to the racist caricature used by the Indians, and B) why would anyone want popcorn that’s months old? That sounds horrible.

      • asexatheani - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:12 PM

        The “Tomahawk Chop” is pretty cringe-worthy. Though honestly, they could probably keep their name if they just got rid of the Native American stuff. “Brave” could be a generic warrior.

      • The Common Man - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:16 PM

        It is. And Craig’s been Johnny-on-the-spot, pointing out how obnoxious and stupid it is.

      • skids003 - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:43 PM

        Yeah, it’s been a couple of weeks since we got another article of this type. They never give up, scream and cry till you get your way, then find something else to be offended by.

    • Kevin S. - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:11 PM

      http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/10/12/two-must-click-links-jewish-indians-indian-indians-and-the-tomahawk-chop/

      http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2013/10/04/remember-when-puig-was-gonna-cost-the-dodgers-a-playoff-game-with-his-recklessness/#comments

  7. 8man - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:07 PM

    I think the sentence below says all that needs to be said. Topic over.

    If the Indians want to keep their name and their mascot and everything that goes with it, there is nothing that can stop them.

    • The Common Man - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:12 PM

      Yes, because all of us should be immune from criticism for those things we do that are terrible that we technically have the right to do. Congratulations to those of you who cheat on your spouses, pick on people smaller than you, and take up two spaces in the parking lot. 8man says you’re all off the hook.

      • professor30 - Nov 5, 2013 at 3:38 PM

        Cool, i was worried about some of that stuff.

      • Kevin Gillman - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:13 PM

        Congratulations on changing the world, one mis-step at a time, meanwhile, people are losing their homes, losing their jobs, so what can we do about that?

  8. asexatheani - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:11 PM

    They should change it back to Cleveland Spiders. Not offensive in the slightest, and cool sounding.

    • jforquer - Nov 6, 2013 at 2:35 PM

      I’m more and more of the same opinion. The mascot would be stupid though, as are most mascots.

  9. mediocrebob - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:14 PM

    :*( stop being so sensitive. It’s one of the reason this country’s gone to hell. Were turning into the French.

    • asexatheani - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:17 PM

      I think of it less as “being sensitive” and more as “having some basic human decency”.

      I ask you: if they were called the Cleveland Negroes, how long would people stand for it?

      • tedwest - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:54 PM

        An irrelevant, even ridiculous, comparison. Maybe the should just take a cue from the NAACP and UNCF and call themselves the Cleveland I’s?

      • Kevin Gillman - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:14 PM

        I don’t know, how do the people in Chicago think about their BLACKhawks?

    • historiophiliac - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:28 PM

      Really, I don’t understand this. What does that mean “turning into the French”? You want them to rename themselves the Cleveland Musketeers? (or, Mousquetaires /twirls imaginary mustache waaaaay cooler than that BS Joba sports) You think renaming them would be akin to a practice of reducing expenditures by allying with a stronger, more established indigenous military force? You want to send Wahoo to the guillotine? What?

      • indaburg - Nov 9, 2013 at 2:23 PM

        “Were (sic) turning into the the French” = “I don’t know any European history.”

        I’m already depressed because baseball season is over. Reading this thread is depressing me more. What has happened to HBT? It’s like Fox News has taken over our comments section.

      • historiophiliac - Nov 11, 2013 at 1:54 PM

        Word. It’s the Yahoos. I’m avoiding mostly now and leave hardly any comments…since I lost it on one troll. Sigh. Sucks.

  10. kaoticbandito - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:20 PM

    It’s starting to sound like Corporate has gotten to Craig like it has to Florio over at PFT.

  11. mediocrebob - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:23 PM

    My god. Funny there wasn’t an issue before this generation came along. I’m sure you could find something offensive with most mascots/names. How about doing something about it rather than writing on a blog that doesn’t change anything? Not gonna change my mind, I can promise you that.

    • DJ MC - Nov 5, 2013 at 3:02 PM

      “My god. Funny there wasn’t an issue before this generation came along. I’m sure you could find something offensive with most people who want everyone to be able to vote. How about doing something about it rather than writing in a newspaper that doesn’t change anything? Not gonna change my mind, I can promise you that.”
      –mediocrebob in 1964

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Nov 5, 2013 at 3:18 PM

      My god. Funny there wasn’t an issue before this generation came along

      You could say the same thing gay rights prior to the last decade, about civil rights before the 60s, and women’s suffrage in the late 1800s, and slavery before that. Just because something used to be a certain way doesn’t make it okay.

      • mediocrebob - Nov 5, 2013 at 3:34 PM

        Very liberal of you all. I’ve gone to a lot of Braves and Indians games in the last 25 years. There have been native Americans outside of the stadiums at times. Maybe 5-10. But it has never seemed to garner much attention. My question is, if they don’t care enough to make a big deal about this, why do you feel the need to? You can compare it to civil rights and gay rights, but the difference is they all cared and did something about it. Not the case here. Just a bunch of people who like to hear themselves talk bc they think they’re “making a difference”. If it makes you feel better about yourself, continue on to deaf ears. Nobody’s listening.

        Say what you want. All I’m reading is ,”blah,blah,blah, I’m going to let the world know how I feel on NBC Sports Talk…” . If you’re all so concerned, this isn’t the forum. I’ll be doing the tomahawk chop next year and the year after and the for 20 more years after that.

      • mediocrebob - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:10 PM

        I’m sure none of you have ever driven or ridden in a Jeep right? Because they’re racist and have a model named after the Cherokees. I guess Chrysler is a bunch of racists.

      • zzalapski - Nov 5, 2013 at 5:51 PM

        Please show examples where Jeep slapped gross misinterpretations of Cherokee iconography all over their product.

      • mediocrebob - Nov 5, 2013 at 7:05 PM

        It’s a symbol. And it’s the same thing. Why would anyone have a problem with having teams named after them? It’s cool. You all just have nothing better to do than to cry about something. Find something worthy of the cause and actually do something about it. (Like the people involved in civil rights movement did). If you want something done, shouldn’t hide behind computer screens.

  12. batthirtyseven - Nov 5, 2013 at 2:40 PM

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I think one of the more offensive parts is the caricature they use as a mascot and the fact that folks who aren’t Native Americans are wearing headdresses and acting/chanting in a manner that they envision Native Americans doing. The Notre Dame comparison is nonsense. A closer example would be people dressing as priests to go to Notre Dame games. A headdress has religious significance to Native Americans like a collar has religious significance to us Catholics. My religion has a lot of reasons to be made fun of (which we all know about), but it’s one of those “I can pick on my little brother, but you can’t” types of things. For non-Natives to do these things is ignorant. “Because it’s always been that way” is easily the stupidest reason not to change something.

  13. tfbuckfutter - Nov 5, 2013 at 3:49 PM

    For the record, they kind of CAN be “forced” to change their logos and, possibly (but less likely) their name because the government could decide not to protect their trademark if they deem it racist.

    So while it would be FORCING them to change, they would likely have to because the images become completely unprofitable in that situation.

  14. theskinsman - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:19 PM

    I’m thinking this issue has a huge age related bias. The greybeards in my age group think if you don’t like a team’s mascot, stop buying the goods and tickets to games.

    The younger set, led by self proclaimed spokesmen Marion Barry, Pencil necked Florio and bad hair dye Costas, are in full wet diaper tantrum over what THEY perceive as the worst evil to ever befall us in human history.
    All you boys have to do is purchase these teams, and then you can name all of them something snappy that won’t hurt the feelings of yak herders in Mongolia.

    • historiophiliac - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:30 PM

      Marion Barry is part of the “younger set”? bahahahahahahahaha

      • atribecalledquestec - Nov 5, 2013 at 5:39 PM

        And Bob Costas is pushing 60! LOL

    • tfbuckfutter - Nov 5, 2013 at 4:33 PM

      It’s humorous when someone feels persecuted by having their own persecution pointed out to them.

      “We hate gays!”
      “That’s wrong.”
      “I’m religious! Stop persecuting my religious persecution of others!”

      • theskinsman - Nov 6, 2013 at 4:57 AM

        Can’t wait til all these teams with names or mascots who offend anyone at all are forced to change their names. Why, it will solve all the worlds problems.

        Please give me the website telling me what’s acceptable and what isn’t. I now understand what those of us who don’t care what anyone names a team they own ( or isn’t about to change it) make the mistake of thinking for themselves.
        Things will be so much better if we can just follow the script and repeat back what we’re told to think.

      • tfbuckfutter - Nov 6, 2013 at 9:35 AM

        Don’t know where my other response went, but a short version:

        You sound stupid suggesting that people aren’t thinking for themselves. You just don’t like that the opposing side is making compelling enough arguments to sway opinion. That’s how ideas work though. You share thoughts and get people thinking. That’s how society was formed. It’s why we no longer live in caves. Because someone said “Hey, I can use this mud to build a cave anywhere I want” and others said “Hey, that’s a great idea! I’m going to do that too”….meanwhile you’re still sitting in your cave wondering why no one finds you ‘dumb polack’ jokes funny anymore. Probably that damn Rachel Maddow.

        Also, if you want to know what is “acceptable” all you have to do is actually PAY ATTENTION. It’s pretty easy. If a group of people say “this offends us” well an evolved human being adjusts their behavior accordingly. Again, it’s how society works.

  15. largebill - Nov 5, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    Who cares? Also, why did the team respond to the idiot with the stupid question. Best way to deal with the whiny irritants is to ignore them.

  16. gloccamorra - Nov 5, 2013 at 7:04 PM

    The solution is so simple: keep the Indian name but replace the native American caricature with a 1939 Indian Chief motorcycle, with a baseball player riding it. The team may have to buy the old Indian Motorcycle copyright though.

    • Anoesis - Nov 5, 2013 at 8:58 PM

      Now owned by Polaris Industries (also owner of Victory), who are manufacturing new Indian motorcycles in Spirit Lake, Iowa. The iconic Native American profile head still graces the front fender. In fact, the entirely newly-engineered bike was built around being able to carry those big fenders and still perform well.

      Unlike the term redskin, Indian has little to do with Native Americans. Western European “discoverers” of the Americas thought they’d sailed to India, thus the misnomer, despite the fact that the circumference of the planet was known within a remarkable 1% accuracy more than 2,000 years ago (Eratosthenes).

      The insulting caricature, however, is insensitive in the extreme, right up there with flying the Stars and Bars. Both are symbols of oppression and discrimination.

  17. thebadguyswon - Nov 5, 2013 at 8:05 PM

    I still want to know where I can buy one of those New York Jews hats.

    • johanna884 - Nov 5, 2013 at 11:25 PM

      You can buy a “Fightin Whities” shirt here:

      http://www.cafepress.com/fightinwhite

      and read about the name “Fightin’ Whities” here:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fighting_Whites

      If we made some “Fightin Jews” hates, we could buy back Manhattan…

  18. roanboon - Nov 6, 2013 at 12:43 AM

    Some of the recent expansion teams in pro sports were wise in foreseeing this issue. Jazz, Magic, Heat, Sparks, Thunder… all inanimate objects. With full sincerery, I have heard that some people take offense from animals being team logos or mascots (Lions, Tigers, etc) because certain spiritualities believe every living entity has a soul. Best to just stay away from every realm of possible offense. Even someone who’s father died on the job as a boilermaker might be made uneasy by the sound of the team’s name. Take care of everything in one swoop and move on.

  19. steincj36 - Nov 6, 2013 at 9:26 AM

    Southerners call northerners “Yankees” as a derogatory term. I was once called a “Yankee cracker.”

    Not sure once this ball starts rolling that it will ever stop.

  20. whoneedsfacts - Nov 7, 2013 at 10:03 AM

    You know Craig, you really should get your facts straight before spouting off nonsense. The Indians were indeed named after native american Louis Sockalexis and the story is not complete bunk as you proclaim. Maybe a little research on your part would have lead you to that conclusion, but hey, who needs facts when your’re writing a story, right? Here’s what happened:

    The Cleveland Spiders were a NL club from 1891 to 1899. Sockalexis joined the club in 1897. The manager was Patsy Tebeau. Local sportswriters became enamored with Sockalexis leading to a headline in the Cleveland Plain Dealer on March 20 referring to the team as “Tebeau’s Indians.” By the end of the month, the Spiders’ moniker was virtually forgotten, and the Cleveland club became the Indians.

    The Indians became defunct in 1989, but re-emerged in the AL in 1901 known as the Cleveland Blues, then the Broncos in 1902 and then the Naps in 1903 in honor of their best player at the time, Nap Lajoie. Lajioie departed in 1914 after losing 102 games prompting a name change. The president of the Naps allowed the Cleveland sports writers to pick the new name. The title of Indians was their choice, it having been one of the names applied to the old National League club of Cleveland many years ago.

    So there you have it. Sorry Craig to burst your bubble.

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  1. R. Castillo (4772)
  2. M. Cuddyer (2493)
  3. K. Bryant (2307)
  4. W. Myers (1967)
  5. G. Richards (1965)
  1. H. Ramirez (1911)
  2. D. Ortiz (1882)
  3. A. Cashner (1809)
  4. J. Hamilton (1790)
  5. A. McCutchen (1763)