Principal Bans Students From Wearing One Item Of Clothing - Deems It Racist

One school is taking a stand against what it has deemed to be an example of racism in popular culture.

Usually, schools encourage kids to come together in support of their teams, often even their state pro-sports teams. It can be a fun way for students, staff and faculty to bond and take pride in the local community. In one Maryland school, however, students are no longer allowed to wear any sports apparel for their local NFL team. According to a letter that went out, the team's name and logos are 'derogatory' and 'racist'.

Green Acres School in North Bethesda, Maryland sent out the letter last week. Neal Brown, the principal of the school, warned parents that any student wearing Washington Redskins gear would be punished.

The Redskins NFL franchise formed back in 1933, but in recent years there have been a lot of debates about cultural sensitivity. The word 'redskin' is a racial slur for Native Americans. The team's logo is a red-skinned, stereotypical Native American man in profile, complete with braids and feathers in his hair. Brown says the logo is 'racially demeaning'.

"At best, the image is an ethnic stereotype that promotes cultural misunderstanding; at worst, it is intensely derogatory," Brown wrote.

Punishments, Brown says, will depend on the age of the student and the severity of the offense. "We will handle it in an age-appropriate, sensible and sensitive way," Brown said to USA TODAY Sports. "I certainly don't want kids to feel they can't support their team or there's anything wrong with that."

Brown may feel the team logo and name is racially insensitive, but ironically, Native Americans do not. The Washington Post conducted a survey in 2016 and found that some 90 percent of Native Americans said they weren't offended.

Daniel Snyder, the owner of the Washington Redskins, says that he's not even considering the change of name. He has long held out over the growing protests and calls for cultural sensitivity, mostly perpetuated by non-Natives and politicians.

"I’ve listened carefully to the commentary and perspectives on all sides, and I respect the feelings of those who are offended by the team name. But I hope such individuals also try to respect what the name means, not only for all of us in the extended Washington Redskins family, but among Native Americans too," Snyder wrote in an open letter published in the Washington Post in 2013.

"So when I consider the Washington Redskins name, I think of what it stands for. I think of the Washington Redskins traditions and pride I want to share with my three children, just as my father shared with me -- and just as you have shared with your family and friends," Snyder explained in the letter, noting that in study after study, the majority of Native American individuals were not offended and didn’t care about the team name or logo.

Brown, staff, faculty and parents of students in the Green Acres School are, for the most part, satisfied with the ban. "We have a rich history of diversity and inclusion and respect," said Brown. "The response we've gotten so far has been very positive and understanding, even among kids and staff members who are diehard fans."

Source: Daily Mail
Photo: Private School Review, YouTube

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