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Is the Atlanta Braves 'Screaming Indian' Logo Offensive?

The 2013 batting practice hat shows a return of the team's former logo.

AOL's Sporting News reports the Atlanta Braves will reinstate the "Screaming Indian" as their logo on batting practice hats in the new season. The logo, which hasn't been used since 1989, has caused an uproar in the sporting and baseball blogosphere. 

The Atlanta Braves are among a handful of professional sports teams with names and logos that have Native American references that are, well, insulting to Native Americans. Trying to keep a low profile that is not offensive while keeping with the trends of "nostalgic logos" makes for a tricky existence.

Amid cries of "offensive" and "racist" are those who just give it an "F" for effort

Indian Country Today says though there are many who miss the days of Noc-A-Homa, the "Screaming Savage was considered one of the most offensive Native caricatures in sports, and for many Natives its retirement seemed a victory in the fight against stereotypes in pop culture."

Should the Braves scrap their plans and ensure the caricature of Native Americans is a thing of the past? Or would this be merely a concession to political correctness to Braves fans? 

Shane Reynolds December 30, 2012 at 02:48 PM
Is there nothing else to write about? This "issue" comes up every few years, and then we realize the only people who care are about eleven white people who don't watch sports and who think all Americans should get back in boats and go back to whichever country our ancestors came from. I don't know how far back we're supposed to go; I guess we would all end up somewhere in the Middle East eventually.
Tammy Osier December 30, 2012 at 07:31 PM
The Huffington Post (AOL) has no juicy news since we haven't gone off the fiscal cliff yet (when the juicy news starts when they can blame repubicans for everything). When all else fails on a slow news day...cry racism (...ad nauseum).
Gail Lane December 30, 2012 at 07:45 PM
I would say that this is pretty important to people with Native American ancestry ... and many others just give this a big "meh."
Tammy Osier December 30, 2012 at 08:04 PM
Gail, I never understood why. Braves? It implies that Native Americans are brave and warriors. To me, that's a good thing, not a bad thing. I figured it was a handful of people that bring this up. I'd be curious of a poll of a majority of native Americans. I just don't think you'd get the same criticism. If i'm wrong, then I'll concede. What about the Cleveland Indians or washington Redskins? Do they have the same problem? In Indiana, Georgia and surrounding states, we have areas named after local tribes. No outcry there. Just curious if this is a true effort or not. If it truly is offensive, then maybe change the screaming savage to something more dispictive of a Brave Warrior. I always thought of these logos as a way of blending our american heritage together.
Gail Lane December 30, 2012 at 08:06 PM
Will be interesting to see. The links show many comments of outrage. Dylan Murphy of SportsGrid said that "No matter how the Braves PR department tries to spin it, the logo is racist – it’s just a screaming Native American head, emphasizing stereotypes and the emotional simplicity of a people." I really think as a society, if it doesn't affect us INDIVIDUALLY, we fail to understand the negative affects of something like this.
Ed Varn December 30, 2012 at 08:16 PM
Back a few years when the NCAA was trying to get Florida State to drop "Seminoles" as their mascot, Chief Joseph of the Seminole tribe went with them to the hearing and described the proceedings as "another case of the white man telling the red man what's best for him." That ended that. But, the media will always be ever alert to perceived "victims".
Paul L. Dragu December 30, 2012 at 09:29 PM
In Western society, you can pretty much say and do anything you want as long as you're not killing or physically hurting anyone. In many other countries you get killed and imprisoned for saying or doing things outside the rules of the state (such was the case where I was born). Conclusion; we are bored as shit because we don't have real problems, so we throw fits about things that are rather irrelevant now. Yes, the Indians were taken over. But guess what? Every tribe of every race has been taken over and enslaved at one time or another. That includes white people. During the Roman Empire there were more slaves than citizens, and yes, most of them were white. Just under a century ago, a lunatic killed 6 million Jews, yet you don't see Jews protesting Mercedes and sauerkraut. Get over it, people.
Tammy Osier December 30, 2012 at 09:46 PM
I guess I do judge by my perceptions growing up. My grandfather was native american, as dark and handsome as mohogany wood, and I never heard a word of offense from him. My grandfather loved and took me to Braves games. I had jewish people in my family who were not offended at Christmas. We were just not raised that way. You are who you are, good, bad or ugly, now get out and find out what your place is and fulfil the calling on your life. Indian tribes may have a point, and that's not for me to judge, but I think right now in our society we're all a little "weary" of constant offenses and bringing up race at every turn. I'll be glad when we all embrace our heritages, both good and bad, learn from them and live together as Americans.
Tim December 30, 2012 at 10:21 PM
"Them Florida Semi-Holes ain't nothing but a bunch of half ass indians anyway!"
Tim December 30, 2012 at 10:55 PM
"I'm Cherokee and it doesn't bother me in the least"
Ed Varn December 30, 2012 at 11:16 PM
To paraphrase the late P. T. Barnum: "It's better to be thought a fool, than to open one's mouth and leave no doubt."
Mr. B December 30, 2012 at 11:20 PM
My maternal great grandmother was Cherokee. That must make me some part Indian. I'm not bothered. But I have a friend that is more Cherokee than me, 25% I believe (his father was half Cherokee.) He always wonders what people are doing at the Braves games when they do the chop. I usually just tell him to shut up and have another beer. That seems to settle it. He gets his cut from the casino so he's happy.
Tammy Osier December 31, 2012 at 12:01 AM
Wait....Ed Varn, that was Abraham Lincoln. PT Barnum said a sucker was born every minute! lol
Kim Roberto December 31, 2012 at 10:34 AM
My alma mater, Catawba College in Salisbury, NC, uses the mascot "Indians." Yes, there are Catawba Indians, but we just used Indians, with different variations of a representative of an indian over the years. This same issue came up years ago, and it went before the Indian tribe who supported our use of the name. They felt we used the name honoraby, without malice or mockery. That ended that. That being said, I think the braves logo is ugly. I don't like it, but not because it is an Indian. It looks like a screaming guy wearing part of a ball cap in front and part of a headress in back. I think they could come up with a better picture.
HRPufnstuf December 31, 2012 at 02:06 PM
I thought he was laughing, not screaming.
Glenn December 31, 2012 at 02:41 PM
Native Americans were not a sophisticated or technological advanced culture when first encountered by the Spanish and Europeans. Most did not have a written language. The French called them "savages" which was an accurate description. Hollywood totally gave them a new (and totally false), honorable, and spiritual image. That's when it became fashionable to name things such as cars, sports teams, bars, cigar store indians, etc., after them. The White man almost wiped them out, then they put them on reservations, and got them drunk. Now they are angered just like everyone else in America. Or should I say "offended?" Let the symbols remain. I would rather see a screaming brave than a subordinate Tonto.
Andrew Harmon December 31, 2012 at 02:47 PM
Native American groups need to stop worrying about the Braves name and logo, and focus their attention on the Washington Redskins. That actually is a racist term! Could you imagine a team called the Blackskins, or the Yellowskins?
Glenn December 31, 2012 at 02:58 PM
You must be a Cowboys fan!!
Tammy Osier December 31, 2012 at 03:10 PM
AH, that's why I wondered if there had ever been a problem with that one. I cna see that. And KR, our roads and schools etc...are all named aftr tribes. Those names belong to the tribes nad they should have a say, but I have to wonder why no one said anything years ago when those areas were named. I always saw itas a sign on honor a well. Although, hollywood hasn't helped their image at all, but does hollywood ever do anything honorable?
Karsten Torch December 31, 2012 at 03:11 PM
"Racist" is a term thrown around so much now, it means nothing. I'm convinced people wake up in the mornings and just look for things to be offended by. Guess what? In this country, we have no right not to be offended. Get over it. Racist- 1. The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others. 2. Discrimination or prejudice based on race. Using "Braves" and the screaming Indian doesn't fall into either category. Sorry, but crying "Racism" just makes you look stupid. Would it be better to use an image of an Indian in a suit standing in front of a casino?
Good Grief Y'all December 31, 2012 at 05:41 PM
"Braves" is not offensive, but the image is. They should keep the name and change the picture.
Glenn December 31, 2012 at 07:59 PM
He looks like he is choking. Fits right in! :o)
Michael Robinson December 31, 2012 at 09:16 PM
Positive stereotypes get irritating (and sometimes depressing) to those who don't or can't live up to them.
bobby black December 31, 2012 at 10:51 PM
Or blame George Bush.
Todd January 03, 2013 at 04:53 PM
Where can I buy one? I love that it has become a symbol of PC stupidity. Now I would actually wear the god-awful looking thing. In educated circles this phenomenon is called: Doing something that is counter-intuitive.
Mitch January 03, 2013 at 05:35 PM
I think the logo is a good representation of ex-Brave Andruw Jones the other night while he was putting that desk together and his (soon to be ex)wife came over and said “no that piece goes this way and you have to screw this piece on that end”. He then grabs her by the neck and drags her down some stairs and threatens to kill her. I can totally relate to Andruw, I have made that same face! Not for a wife beating of course, I’m referring to the desk assembly. Those instructions can be ridiculously frustrating sometimes!
Ed Varn January 03, 2013 at 06:19 PM
tammy--I've also seen it attributed to Einstene in and Groucho Marx. Probably one of those little homilies that have been around since Biblical times.
North Georgia Weather January 03, 2013 at 06:46 PM
You must be friggin' kidding me... nothing else to talk about? No more IMPORTANT news to discuss? REALLY?
tae tae January 17, 2013 at 04:16 AM
Come on!!!!!!!!!!!!! There MUST be something else to talk about!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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