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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Posnanski: Cleveland Indians: The name

Pretty sure that cartoonist does Mallard Fillmore now.

in my national search of more than 300 national newspapers, I could not find a single mention of Louis Sockalexis in the entire year of 1915.

The story I grew up hearing — that the Cleveland Indians were named to honor Louis Sockalexis — is certainly untrue…

when Sockalexis joined the team in 1897, there WAS legitimate excitement. The stories of his baseball exploits were known everywhere. The curiosity of seeing a Native American athlete play ball was overwhelming. And people began calling the team in 1897, yes, the Indians. In his honor…

The fact that the 1897 Cleveland team was often called “Indians” was not directly the reason the team was officially named Indians in 1915. But it was part of the decision-making process…

I don’t believe the Indians were named to honor Louis Sockalexis, not exactly. But I do believe the Indians name could honor him. That choice is ours.

The District Attorney Posted: March 18, 2014 at 01:47 PM | 89 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: history, indians, joe posnanski, louis sockalexis

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   1. Voros McCracken of Pinkus Posted: March 18, 2014 at 02:36 PM (#4673445)
I don't know, the way Joe explains things, it seems pretty clear to me that the name's origin is indeed due to Sockalexis.
   2. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: March 18, 2014 at 03:19 PM (#4673490)
Maybe the Indians should go the Black Hawks route and change their logo to a profile of Sockalexis.
   3. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: March 18, 2014 at 04:13 PM (#4673545)
change their logo to a profile of Sockalexis.

like this?
   4. base ball chick Posted: March 18, 2014 at 04:13 PM (#4673547)
i would love to see them use a real pick of louis and the slogan "SOCK EM" instead of teeth wahoo. you wanna say you are honoring him, then do it

and no, i do not have a problem about a team being named after an ethnicity as long as it is not an insulting name and yes, i would become an instant fan of any team that named itself the "Black Grrlz"
   5. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: March 18, 2014 at 04:17 PM (#4673550)
i would become an instant fan of any team that named itself the "Black Grrlz"

only if you design their logo, Lisa
   6. Hang down your head, Tom Foley Posted: March 18, 2014 at 04:21 PM (#4673554)
They should go back to "Spiders" to honor Cleveland legend Glenallen Hill.
   7. The District Attorney Posted: March 18, 2014 at 04:33 PM (#4673559)
Personally, my point of view is that I don't like the name "Redskins." I think "Indians" is okay, as long as it is okay by the Native Americans, which it seems to be. I very strongly suspect that the day will eventually come when "Indians" is like "Negroes" -- not technically offensive, and yet not something that contemporary people ever actually say, or would feel at all comfortable calling a sports team. But, that is not quite where we are, yet.

So, I don't hate the name. And I don't want to impute any bad motives to Poz, other than that he grew up loving a team called the "Indians," and thus is probably inclined to defend that. All that said, I have to feel this is an attempt to give the name a positive public relations "spin", and that the logic of it doesn't hold up. Why should we choose to honor Louis Sockalexis? I feel bad for the guy, but that's different than wanting to honor him. Jackie Robinson wouldn't be much of a hero if he drunk himself out of baseball by 1949.
   8. Greg K Posted: March 18, 2014 at 04:43 PM (#4673563)
and no, i do not have a problem about a team being named after an ethnicity as long as it is not an insulting name and yes, i would become an instant fan of any team that named itself the "Black Grrlz"

Same here, if some professional team were to name themselves "the Canucks" I'd be a fa...wait a minute!

OK, bad example. Now, if a team named themselves "the Canadians"...
   9. WahooSam Posted: March 18, 2014 at 04:50 PM (#4673567)
Les Canadiens! Vives les glorieux!
   10. TDF, situational idiot Posted: March 18, 2014 at 05:00 PM (#4673569)
Same here, if some professional team were to name themselves "the Canucks" I'd be a fa...wait a minute!
It's odd. I don't think I've ever heard an American use "Canuck" as anything but a derogatory term. I was talking to a Canadian once, and when I asked him about it, he said "We use the term like you guys use 'Yankee'".

It may be the only word out there that the group it's used "against" actually looks on it as a positive term.
   11. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: March 18, 2014 at 05:07 PM (#4673572)
"Yankee fan" comes to mind as another example of that.
   12. vortex of dissipation Posted: March 18, 2014 at 05:08 PM (#4673574)
It's odd. I don't think I've ever heard an American use "Canuck" as anything but a derogatory term. I was talking to a Canadian once, and when I asked him about it, he said "We use the term like you guys use 'Yankee'".

It may be the only word out there that the group it's used "against" actually looks on it as a positive term.


"Canuck" was the official name for what was one of the most significant aircraft ever designed and built in Canada - the Avro Canada CF-100 Canuck. I don't think the government would have given it that name if it was viewed as derogatory.
   13. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: March 18, 2014 at 05:10 PM (#4673576)
It's odd. I don't think I've ever heard an American use "Canuck" as anything but a derogatory term. I was talking to a Canadian once, and when I asked him about it, he said "We use the term like you guys use 'Yankee'".

It may be the only word out there that the group it's used "against" actually looks on it as a positive term.


People see 'Yankee' as a positive term? Or do some Canadians use it as a slur against other Canadians?
   14. Greg K Posted: March 18, 2014 at 05:18 PM (#4673583)
People see 'Yankee' as a positive term? Or do some Canadians use it as a slur against other Canadians?


As I understand it, outside of America "Yankee" just means, "American". But Yankee is a regional term within America. So if someone from South Carolina is visiting London, a local may call them a Yankee, and then be very confused when the person reacts strongly against the term.

As far as I know Canuck doesn't really have a regional character in the same way. There are the Vancouver Canucks, but to me that's just such a sports team name that I don't normally make the connection to Canuck as a term for Canadians. In fact, I'm not sure "Canuck" is ever really used by two Canadians talking to one another. At least in my experience, it's what some foreigners call us (and that's totally cool, whatever it's original intent I don't think anyone sees it as a derogatory term these days), or a word we might use to describe ourselves in an international context...like I recall the Canadian Olympics alpine skiers were nicknamed "The Crazy Canucks" a few years back, and we embraced that. But it's not a word I ever thought of myself as.
   15. Jeltzandini Posted: March 18, 2014 at 05:32 PM (#4673591)
And part of it is that there genuine anti-Canadian animus is all but nonexistent. (Outside of the world of Infinite Jest, where Canadian-US relations are tortured and complicated, and the pejorative has been shortened to Nuck.) Nobody really goes around darkly ######## about the damned Canucks.

Beware in general though arguments that "they use the term for themselves, how can it be offensive?" There are some rather obvious problems with that one.

   16. Curse of the Andino Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:01 PM (#4673600)
Nobody really goes around darkly ######## about the damned Canucks.


Well, I dated a redhead from Toronto once...
   17. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:06 PM (#4673601)
As I understand it, outside of America "Yankee" just means, "American".


Yep, spot on. Then there is always the rhyming slang that we use here in Aus. Americans are often referred to as septics. Short for septic tank, because it rhymes with Yank. It's a playful term, not meant to offensive. But then over here you can say something like "good on ya, ya bastard" and that's not intended to be derogatory either.
   18. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:14 PM (#4673602)
I very strongly suspect that the day will eventually come when "Indians" is like "Negroes" -- not technically offensive, and yet not something that contemporary people ever actually say, or would feel at all comfortable calling a sports team. But, that is not quite where we are, yet.

This seems unlikely. A majority of actual "American Indians" appear to prefer that term to "Native Americans". The Smithsonian polled them when planning the new museum in DC, and it is in fact called "The Museum of the American Indian".

I guess they could change their minds, but I don't know why they would.
   19. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:15 PM (#4673603)
not to mention the fact that they're NOT "native" americans--they just got here before the white man did. Aboriginal Americans would be more accurate
   20. Srul Itza Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:30 PM (#4673611)
Somebody posted a link recently where a fellow commented that someone he had met much preferred being called an Indian to a "Native American" because the former was a constant commentary on the inherent stupidity of the white man.
   21. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:30 PM (#4673612)
not to mention the fact that they're NOT "native" americans


Ahh, the primer nitpick.

With that argument, there are no native peoples anywhere except in Africa where homo sapiens first came about. Or the garden of Eden depending on your chosen beliefs(sorry, had to throw that in there as in true primer form anytime you can combine politics and religion you can divert a post faster then a drunk driver avoiding a random breath testing stop)
   22. Greg K Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:33 PM (#4673614)
I very strongly suspect that the day will eventually come when "Indians" is like "Negroes" -- not technically offensive, and yet not something that contemporary people ever actually say, or would feel at all comfortable calling a sports team. But, that is not quite where we are, yet.

Which is kind of interesting. As far as I can tell no one in Canada uses "Indian" anymore (except for amusingly enough constitutional documents).
   23. theboyqueen Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:37 PM (#4673617)
Somebody posted a link recently where a fellow commented that someone he had met much preferred being called an Indian to a "Native American" because the former was a constant commentary on the inherent stupidity of the white man.


I've never understood using the term "American Indian" but this is pretty classic. It is now my preferred nomenclature.
   24. Greg K Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:39 PM (#4673619)
And part of it is that there genuine anti-Canadian animus is all but nonexistent. (Outside of the world of Infinite Jest, where Canadian-US relations are tortured and complicated, and the pejorative has been shortened to Nuck.) Nobody really goes around darkly ######## about the damned Canucks.

Beware in general though arguments that "they use the term for themselves, how can it be offensive?" There are some rather obvious problems with that one.

Not a hockey fan I see.

You are right, of course, that intent matters. If people started using Canuck as a derogatory term it would change how I feel about it (and indeed, I could be wrong, but I believe it was originally used for that purpose in the 19th century).

I'm actually flying to Florida this weekend to visit my parents who spend a couple months there every winter. My brother has mentioned that some people there use the term "snow bird" (which is used fairly commonly here to describe Canadians who winter in Florida and seems fairly innocuous to us) in a pretty unkind fashion.
   25. theboyqueen Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:42 PM (#4673620)
Is October 12th universally known as "Indigenous Peoples" day or is that just a California thing? I know once I was once somewhere on the east coast on that date and it was an actual holiday in honor of Christopher Columbus, which kind of blew my mind.
   26. An Athletic in Powderhorn™ Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:52 PM (#4673628)
Just a California thing. And apparently South Dakota and Washington have a Native Americans' Day around the same time.
   27. Nolan Giesbrecht Posted: March 18, 2014 at 06:52 PM (#4673629)
Which is kind of interesting. As far as I can tell no one in Canada uses "Indian" anymore (except for amusingly enough constitutional documents).


I work in Winnipeg with a non-profit organization and the community in which we are located is primarily Aboriginal. I'm never quite sure how I should refer to them - Native American or Aboriginal or Native or Indian. I think every Native American I've asked - all of whom would be 18 to 28 years old or so - has told me to just say Indian.

Still makes me feel a bit uneasy as every time I come across someone with racist views/opinions regarding Native Americans, the term they use is inevitably "Indian."

A lot of guys I work with just say they're "brown" in the same way I refer to myself as "white". Works for me.
   28. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 18, 2014 at 07:07 PM (#4673636)
not to mention the fact that they're NOT "native" americans--they just got here before the white man did. Aboriginal Americans would be more accurate


"Aboriginal" means "was there from the beginning". So it's not any more 'accurate'.
   29. Greg K Posted: March 18, 2014 at 07:22 PM (#4673641)
I work in Winnipeg with a non-profit organization and the community in which we are located is primarily Aboriginal. I'm never quite sure how I should refer to them - Native American or Aboriginal or Native or Indian. I think every Native American I've asked - all of whom would be 18 to 28 years old or so - has told me to just say Indian.

Weird, my experience is likely far less than yours - I grew up in Toronto and to my knowledge never met a First Nations person until I went to school in the prairies, where they are a much larger presence. Though it may be skewed because my experience was almost exclusively on campus, in particular the FNUC (First Nations University of Canada) in Regina.

At the end of the day, whatever people ask to be called is cool with me.
   30. cardsfanboy Posted: March 18, 2014 at 07:31 PM (#4673643)
not to mention the fact that they're NOT "native" americans--they just got here before the white man did. Aboriginal Americans would be more accurate


I've always thought of "Native Americans" as being pretty accurate. Basically, they were native to the continents that were named after Amerigo Vespucci. So if they were living on the continent named after him, before he was born...there is nothing wrong with saying they were native americans.

At least that is how I have rationalized it.
   31. Nolan Giesbrecht Posted: March 18, 2014 at 07:54 PM (#4673648)
At the end of the day, whatever people ask to be called is cool with me.


And really, there are few situations where I need to refer to someone by their ethnicity/heritage.

Edited to add that I'm fine with the Cleveland Indians name (as long as Native Americans are okay with it) but wish they'd get rid of all Wahoo Sam logos.
   32. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: March 18, 2014 at 08:11 PM (#4673654)
Is October 12th universally known as "Indigenous Peoples" day or is that just a California thing? I know once I was once somewhere on the east coast on that date and it was an actual holiday in honor of Christopher Columbus, which kind of blew my mind.


What part blew your mind?
   33. zack Posted: March 18, 2014 at 08:31 PM (#4673658)
Maybe the Indians should go the Black Hawks route and change their logo to a profile of Sockalexis.

Well it's not really that route, since the Blackhawks logo isn't actually an image of Black Hawk. The team is named after a WWI Army division that is named after the Chief, and the image is just generic. Also the name is one word now.
   34. puck Posted: March 18, 2014 at 08:45 PM (#4673659)
What part blew your mind?

I assume that Christopher Columbus's life is actually celebrated.
   35. puck Posted: March 18, 2014 at 08:46 PM (#4673660)
I don't think I've ever heard an American use "Canuck" as anything but a derogatory term.

That's because we don't know anything else about Canada. It's the one Canadian word we know.
   36. frannyzoo Posted: March 18, 2014 at 08:54 PM (#4673662)
Is October 12th universally known as "Indigenous Peoples" day or is that just a California thing? I know once I was once somewhere on the east coast on that date and it was an actual holiday in honor of Christopher Columbus, which kind of blew my mind.


Here in Albuquerque, Columbus Day is truly The Holiday That Dare Not Speak Its Name. Zero mention is made of Columbus, the schools tend to have a day off on the Friday prior called "Fall Break," but it's to watch the Balloon Festival and has nothing to Columbus. The paper will list the closure of Federal offices on Columbus Day, but with as little mention as to why they're closed as is possible. Being from elsewhere, it took a while to notice, but the most interesting thing is that people are even sheepish to bring up the fact that "we're" celebrating things a bit differently. An anti-Columbus parade might actually be in order here, but the attitude is to just ignore it all and avoid any mention/discussion whatsoever.
   37. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: March 18, 2014 at 10:01 PM (#4673674)
I assume that Christopher Columbus's life is actually celebrated.


I can understand that, but his post reads as if he was unaware there was a Columbus Day, let alone one celebrated on the same day as Indigenous People's Day.
   38. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: March 18, 2014 at 10:02 PM (#4673675)
I remember hanging out with some LSU fans at the CWS one year and they referred to some guys in the stands from Shreveport as Yankees. I asked what they call me (WI native)? Y'all Canadians.
   39. cardsfanboy Posted: March 18, 2014 at 10:20 PM (#4673679)

I can understand that, but his post reads as if he was unaware there was a Columbus Day, let alone one celebrated on the same day as Indigenous People's Day.


Exactly. I wasn't sure if he was being sarcastic or was actually seriously ignorant that there was a Columbus day. I get that tone isn't always available in an environment like this, but tone of any type was completely missing on the original post.
   40. TerpNats Posted: March 18, 2014 at 10:26 PM (#4673681)
In New Jersey, North Plainfield High School's teams are called "Canucks"; it baffled me for a while, but I sense it was a take-off on the "North." (There is a North Plainfield, a Plainfield and a South Plainfield -- three communities in three different counties.)
   41. Greg K Posted: March 18, 2014 at 11:11 PM (#4673695)
In New Jersey, North Plainfield High School's teams are called "Canucks"; it baffled me for a while, but I sense it was a take-off on the "North." (There is a North Plainfield, a Plainfield and a South Plainfield -- three communities in three different counties.)

In my OOTP game there were two expansion teams in 2017. One of them was the Austin Eskimos...which seems like an odd choice for Texas.

(Though I didn't complain. In the expansion draft they took Jose Reyes, who I was paying 22m to be a utility man, and Francisco Liriano, who was getting 18m for the next four years to be my long man.)
   42. theboyqueen Posted: March 18, 2014 at 11:27 PM (#4673699)
I remember when I was a little kid Columbus Day was a thing, but then it sort of completely disappeared at some point. It was certainly never a day off. It blew my mind that Columbus Day was an actual holiday in other places, with parades and everything.
   43. vortex of dissipation Posted: March 18, 2014 at 11:31 PM (#4673701)
In New Jersey, North Plainfield High School's teams are called "Canucks"; it baffled me for a while, but I sense it was a take-off on the "North." (There is a North Plainfield, a Plainfield and a South Plainfield -- three communities in three different counties.)


It took me quite a while to figure out why the University of Connecticut's athletic teams are called the Huskies (UConn = Yukon)...
   44. theboyqueen Posted: March 18, 2014 at 11:34 PM (#4673702)
Mind you, that Indigenous People's day is October 12th seems off to me; it would be like turning St. Patrick's Day into Druid Heritage Day or something. I'm all for another holiday but I think it should be like Memorial day -- a day of mourning.
   45. haggard Posted: March 18, 2014 at 11:58 PM (#4673707)
People wouldn't complain about the Indians' name if they had a mascot like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OhqbSB_bwPs
   46. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: March 19, 2014 at 12:34 AM (#4673716)
I remember when I was a little kid Columbus Day was a thing, but then it sort of completely disappeared at some point. It was certainly never a day off. It blew my mind that Columbus Day was an actual holiday in other places, with parades and everything.

Are you serious? How many Italian-Americans do you think there are in cities like New York and San Francisco?
   47. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: March 19, 2014 at 12:49 AM (#4673720)
I remember when I was a little kid Columbus Day was a thing, but then it sort of completely disappeared at some point. It was certainly never a day off. It blew my mind that Columbus Day was an actual holiday in other places, with parades and everything.


If nothing else, you still weren't getting any mail that day, regardless where you lived in the U.S.
   48. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: March 19, 2014 at 12:49 AM (#4673721)
It blew my mind that Columbus Day was an actual holiday in other places, with parades and everything.


Well the Sopranos did a great episode where Columbus Day featured prominently. Of course in the episode the usual mayhem and violence ensued.
   49. theboyqueen Posted: March 19, 2014 at 01:00 AM (#4673723)
I can assure you that Columbus Day is not celebrated in any sort of public way in San Francisco. Where have you gone Joe Dimaggio?

Seriously, has Columbus Day elsewhere become a celebration of Italian-American heritage? It's quite debatable that Columbus was even Italian to begin with.

Do they have a Dia de Cortes in Mexico? Somehow I doubt it.
   50. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: March 19, 2014 at 01:31 AM (#4673724)
I can assure you that Columbus Day is not celebrated in any sort of public way in San Francisco.


It appears to call itself the Italian Heritage Day now, but according to every web site I've found, San Francisco is the proud home of the oldest and longest running celebration of Columbus Day in the U.S.
   51. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: March 19, 2014 at 01:32 AM (#4673725)
Here are some details for the 2014 event.
   52. theboyqueen Posted: March 19, 2014 at 01:53 AM (#4673729)
Wow. Mind blown officially. I even found some pictures: Marco! Polo!
   53. bjhanke Posted: March 19, 2014 at 04:21 AM (#4673736)
What I have always wondered is why these teams who have "Redskins" or "Indians" or something as their names, don't just go find a Native American tribe and license their tribal name, making the name a celebration of the tribe. I think that would generate a LOT of good press, and get rid of the bad press they have now. - Brock Hanke
   54. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: March 19, 2014 at 08:30 AM (#4673769)
Seriously, has Columbus Day elsewhere become a celebration of Italian-American heritage? It's quite debatable that Columbus was even Italian to begin with.

NY has both an Italian-themed Columbus Day parade, and a Hispanic-themed Columbus Day parade. The best evidence is that Columbus was Genovese.
   55. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: March 19, 2014 at 08:41 AM (#4673776)
Having a national holiday for Columbus is an abomination. I would like to bludgeon the committee members that decide what 'history' gets put into school text books with their very own gigantic 'history books'.

If you want to celebrate Italian Heritage Day fine, go right ahead, it shouldn't be a national holiday though.
   56. Lassus Posted: March 19, 2014 at 08:54 AM (#4673786)
What I have always wondered is why these teams who have "Redskins" or "Indians" or something as their names, don't just go find a Native American tribe and license their tribal name, making the name a celebration of the tribe. I think that would generate a LOT of good press, and get rid of the bad press they have now. - Brock Hanke

I tried for years to get my hometown "Oriskany Redskins" to be the "Oriskany Iroquois". They kept invoking 'heritage' to me until I gave up.
   57. Random Transaction Generator Posted: March 19, 2014 at 08:59 AM (#4673792)
It took me quite a while to figure out why the University of Connecticut's athletic teams are called the Huskies (UConn = Yukon)...


...and now I finally get it, too.

I just thought they liked that kind of dog.
   58. Greg K Posted: March 19, 2014 at 09:01 AM (#4673793)
...and now I finally get it, too.

I just thought they liked that kind of dog.

The first time I watched the NCAA basketball tournament I thought the Yukon had been allowed to send a team or something.

EDIT: Of course I also sat through most of "Mystic River" thinking it was called Mr. Gribber, so I'm guessing I'm just a moron.
   59. Random Transaction Generator Posted: March 19, 2014 at 09:18 AM (#4673807)
EDIT: Of course I also sat through most of "Mystic River" thinking it was called Mr. Gribber, so I'm guessing I'm just a moron.


I think I know who Greg K really is..
   60. Dan Lee is some pumkins Posted: March 19, 2014 at 09:24 AM (#4673813)
Maybe Greg's an Erasure fan.
   61. Rusty Priske Posted: March 19, 2014 at 10:02 AM (#4673841)
I am Canadian and I have found that calling a Native an 'Indian' is offensive in the same way calling an Inuit an 'Eskimo' is offensive.

In other words, that person might say it, but a white guy saying it is pretty offensive.
   62. Traderdave Posted: March 19, 2014 at 10:19 AM (#4673860)
Columbus Day is a day off for me with guaranteed nice weather. I vote for Columbus Week!


   63. Sunday silence Posted: March 19, 2014 at 10:31 AM (#4673869)
There's Hertz and there's "not exactly."
   64. GregD Posted: March 19, 2014 at 10:37 AM (#4673877)
In other words, that person might say it, but a white guy saying it is pretty offensive.
That was my sense here in the US in the 90s but as mentioned above that has definitely shifted and there are certainly plenty of people, including very politically involved ones, who much prefer Indian to native.
   65. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 19, 2014 at 10:59 AM (#4673902)
Having a national holiday for Columbus is an abomination.


I disagree: Columbus' achievement is one of the top three most significant events in human history, and one that fundamentally reshaped the world, and the repercussions of which continue to be visible all around us. It was an enormous and inspiring achievement in and of itself.

As a man, he was a mixed bag at best, a greedy bigot at worst, but I don't think it fair to heap all of the crimes of the next 500 years in the New World on his shoulders; he has enough to his name as it is.

Can we honor an achievement by a man with such faults? Or are we limited to commemorating flawless heroes? Do such people exist?
   66. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: March 19, 2014 at 11:12 AM (#4673913)
That's because we don't know anything else about Canada. It's the one Canadian word we know.


Is "eh" considered a word?
   67. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: March 19, 2014 at 11:13 AM (#4673915)
If you want to celebrate Italian Heritage Day fine, go right ahead, it shouldn't be a national holiday though.


I've long thought that federal employees got that day off because the Mafia controls the government.

Of course, now that I get federal holidays off, too, I'm perfectly fine with that.
   68. Perry Posted: March 19, 2014 at 11:13 AM (#4673916)
It blew my mind that Columbus Day was an actual holiday in other places, with parades and everything.


It certainly is in Denver. Every year there's a parade, and every year it's disrupted by protesters. Colorado was the first state to make it a holiday.

Seriously, has Columbus Day elsewhere become a celebration of Italian-American heritage?


Seriously, yes.

Is October 12th universally known as "Indigenous Peoples" day or is that just a California thing?


Never heard of it before your post. It's apparently (if Wikipedia is to be believed) a Berkeley thing, not a California thing.
   69. GregD Posted: March 19, 2014 at 11:20 AM (#4673920)
Seriously, has Columbus Day elsewhere become a celebration of Italian-American heritage? It's quite debatable that Columbus was even Italian to begin with.
Tell that to the people who paid for the Columbus monumentin Coumbus Circle!

A CRISTOFORO COLOMBO / GL ITALIANI RESIDENTI IN AMERICA / IRRISO PRIMA / MINACCIATO DURANTE IL VIAGGIO / INCATENATO DOPO / SAPENDO ESSER GENEROSO QUANTO OPPRESSO / DONAVA UN MONDO AL MONDO
   70. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: March 19, 2014 at 11:20 AM (#4673921)
I am Canadian and I have found that calling a Native an 'Indian' is offensive in the same way calling an Inuit an 'Eskimo' is offensive.


Last night I began a mystery by Stan Jones, a native-born Alaskan, who said in his preface that the native people he's writing about, the Inupiat, use that word & "Eskimo" pretty much interchangeably.

Same deal in longtime Wyoming resident Craig Johnson's Walt Longmire mysteries, of which I've read no less than 8 in the past month or so -- his native characters appear to prefer "Indian" to "Native American" & view whites who use the latter as being amusingly over-sensitive toward them.

Maybe it's a Canadian thing?
   71. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: March 19, 2014 at 11:30 AM (#4673928)
Seriously, has Columbus Day elsewhere become a celebration of Italian-American heritage? It's quite debatable that Columbus was even Italian to begin with.


Tell that to the people who paid for the Columbus monumentin Coumbus Circle!

A CRISTOFORO COLOMBO / GL ITALIANI RESIDENTI IN AMERICA / IRRISO PRIMA / MINACCIATO DURANTE IL VIAGGIO / INCATENATO DOPO / SAPENDO ESSER GENEROSO QUANTO OPPRESSO / DONAVA UN MONDO AL MONDO


Anyone here remember when Franco Harris broke into stardom in Pittsburgh? There were large banners that appeared in Three Rivers proclaiming "FRANCO'S ITALIAN ARMY" and "FRANCO'S BLACK ARMY".
   72. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: March 19, 2014 at 11:51 AM (#4673941)


I disagree: Columbus' achievement is one of the top three most significant events in human history, and one that fundamentally reshaped the world, and the repercussions of which continue to be visible all around us. It was an enormous and inspiring achievement in and of itself.

As a man, he was a mixed bag at best, a greedy bigot at worst, but I don't think it fair to heap all of the crimes of the next 500 years in the New World on his shoulders; he has enough to his name as it is.

Can we honor an achievement by a man with such faults? Or are we limited to commemorating flawless heroes? Do such people exist?


I think you are both overestimating his accomplishments and understating his crimes.

The Americas had been 'found' before Columbus and most certainly would have been 'found' again. That being said, even if you want to grant him top three status calling him a greedy bigot at worst is an absolute joke.

He enslaved entire populations, made them wear their cut off hands around their necks if they didn't give him enough tribute gold, fed the natives to his dogs, sold 9 year old girls into sexual slavery, and butchered hundreds when they tried to be rid of Columbus. Yep, just a greedy bigot.
   73. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 19, 2014 at 11:54 AM (#4673943)
nm
   74. if nature called, ladodger34 would listen Posted: March 19, 2014 at 11:58 AM (#4673951)
Same deal in longtime Wyoming resident Craig Johnson's Walt Longmire mysteries, of which I've read no less than 8 in the past month or so -- his native characters appear to prefer "Indian" to "Native American" & view whites who use the latter as being amusingly over-sensitive toward them.[/quote

Anecdotal evidence of course, but my dad has been a building official (he's management, so he dabbles in land use, code enforcement, building inspections, etc) in the Palm Springs area for years now. His desert office is actually in Indio (home of Coachella for you non-California folks). As such, he has come in contact with a bunch of tribes (they are a bunch of casinos in the area) and he said that the vast majority of them prefer to be called Indians.
   75. DanG Posted: March 19, 2014 at 12:41 PM (#4673985)
The First Nations are the various Aboriginal peoples in Canada who are neither Inuit nor Métis. There are currently over 630 recognized First Nations governments or bands spread across Canada, roughly half of which are in the provinces of Ontario and British Columbia. The total population is nearly 700,000 people. Under the Employment Equity Act, First Nations are a "designated group", along with women, visible minorities, and people with physical or mental disabilities. First Nations are not defined as a visible minority under the Act or by the criteria of Statistics Canada.

Within Canada, "First Nations" (most often used in the plural) has come into general use—replacing the deprecated term "Indians"—for the indigenous peoples of the Americas.

   76. cmd600 Posted: March 19, 2014 at 01:13 PM (#4674005)
What I have always wondered is why these teams who have "Redskins" or "Indians" or something as their names, don't just go find a Native American tribe and license their tribal name, making the name a celebration of the tribe. I think that would generate a LOT of good press, and get rid of the bad press they have now


Some do, for example the Florida State Seminoles. Ones that don't, say the Cleveland Indians and Washington Redskins, are obviously not going to find a tribe that will be associated with the mascot/nickname, and there's a lot more money to be made by selling the mascot/nickname than will be generated by the good press of actual celebrating a specific tribe or American Indians in general. I know particularly for Cleveland, a not-insignificant percentage of the town would pitch a fit if Chief Wahoo was officially gone. The team would rather not alienate a large part of the declining (in both population and wealth) fanbase that actually helps pay their bills to please some national media types who don't offer the team a cent. Note, that's not a defense for the Red Sambo, who deserves to have been gone long ago, but that's why he's still around.
   77. Chone Mueller Posted: March 19, 2014 at 01:48 PM (#4674032)
I'm fine with the Cleveland Indians name (as long as Native Americans are okay with it) but wish they'd get rid of all Wahoo Sam logos.


I'm sure you meant Chief Wahoo but it should be noted that Wahoo Sam is the nickname of Hall of Famer, Sam Crawford, who was from Wahoo, Nebraska.
   78. Chone Mueller Posted: March 19, 2014 at 02:03 PM (#4674045)
I was in elementary school in California when the district I was in swapped out Columbus Day for California Admission Day as a school holiday. A few years later, they swapped Admission Day out for something else because it was so close to the beginning of the school year (September 9th).
   79. theboyqueen Posted: March 19, 2014 at 03:21 PM (#4674102)
As someone who has lived in California basically my whole life, I have never heard of California Admission Day. I know Cesar Chavez Day is often a school holiday here. Do they observe that anywhere else?
   80. theboyqueen Posted: March 19, 2014 at 03:38 PM (#4674109)
And yes, Columbus may have been a hell of a sailor but he really is in a category with Pol Pot, Stalin, Mao, Hitler, etc. when it comes to venality and wanton disregard for human life or dignity. Celebrating a day in his honor, or an "Italian Heritage Day" from this legacy is insane. A day of reflection on the sordid origins the Americas, from whence came a nation (or nations) whose actual strength comes from the broadest sort of multiculturalism imaginable, would seem perfectly appropriate.
   81. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: March 19, 2014 at 03:50 PM (#4674111)
Do they observe that anywhere else?


I seriously doubt it.

Just in case there was any doubt California lives in its own little world ...

... but probably that's true of the other 49 states, too. Certain Southern states, Alabama possibly among them, observe Jefferson Davis' & Robert E. Lee's birthdays, though that wasn't true of Arkansas when I was growing up. I assume that hasn't changed.
   82. Chone Mueller Posted: March 19, 2014 at 04:12 PM (#4674120)
#79: The Admission Day holiday at my school was quite some time ago (1969?) and it didn't last long. I may not be remembering this right but at some point, I believe the State left at least one holiday to be decided at the district level. IIRC, in the East Bay, Oakland and Hayward chose to have Caesar Chavez Day, Berkeley went with Malcolm X Day, and Mt. Diablo chose Abraham Lincoln Day which many districts had dropped in favor of a generic Presidents Day holiday.
   83. valuearbitrageur Posted: March 19, 2014 at 04:38 PM (#4674142)
He enslaved entire populations, made them wear their cut off hands around their necks if they didn't give him enough tribute gold, fed the natives to his dogs, sold 9 year old girls into sexual slavery, and butchered hundreds when they tried to be rid of Columbus. Yep, just a greedy bigot.


Come on, it was the New World! Who wasn't enslaving and mutilating people there during that golden age?

An Aztec could "sell his own daughter as a sexual slave or future religious sacrifice, generally for around 500 to 700 beans." And they needed lots of people to sacrifice, "For example, for the reconsecration of the Great Pyramid of Tenochtitlan in 1487, the Aztecs reported that they sacrificed 80,400 prisoners over the course of four days". The Mayans had the most science and the most style, they were like crosseyed egghead interior designers, "some Maya rituals people were killed by having their arms and legs held while a priest cut the person's chest open and tore out his heart as an offering".

That's about as far as I can go defending Columbus as a product of his time and circumstance, because the truth was the native peoples he encountered were generally friendly. "Endless testimonies...prove the mild and pacific temperament of the natives... But our work was to exasperate, ravage, kill, mangle and destroy; small wonder, then, if they tried to kill one of us now and then..."

When Spaniards of that brutal era found his actions so repugnant that they removed him from governorship of the lands he found and jailed him, it's a pretty stark indictment of how far he went over even the extremely tolerant line of those times.




   84. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: March 19, 2014 at 05:58 PM (#4674187)
Anyone here remember when Franco Harris broke into stardom in Pittsburgh? There were large banners that appeared in Three Rivers proclaiming "FRANCO'S ITALIAN ARMY" and "FRANCO'S BLACK ARMY".

In maybe 1973 or 74, before the golden age of jerseys everywhere, we 10 and 11 year olds used to take a t-shirt and write in our own names and numbers. (I made a "SIMPSON 32," e.g.) One of our slower friends walked onto the playground one day ready for some pickup pigskin with a long sleever adorned with "O'HARRIS 32." The rest of us were all like "WTF???" whereupon our friend said, "Yeah, you know, Frank O'Harris," and we all burst out in uprorious laughter.

Well, we would have, except he was like twice our size, so maybe only a few giggles ....
   85. The District Attorney Posted: March 20, 2014 at 07:31 PM (#4674669)
Posnanski addendum:
Hat tip to author Ed Rice and Cleveland VP of Public Affairs Bob DiBiaso: I mentioned in my story about Louis Sockalexis and the naming of the Indians that I could not find Sockalexis named a single time in the 1915 newspapers I searched. That included more than 300 papers around the country.

As it turns out, my search engine did not include the Cleveland Plain Dealer. In an editorial on the day after the team was named Indians, it turns out that Sockalexis very specifically was mentioned in an editorial under a headline “Looking Backward.”

Here is the item in full
It's worth noting the organization's interest in supporting the Sockalexis story...
   86. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: March 21, 2014 at 08:45 PM (#4675118)
At the end of the day, whatever people ask to be called is cool with me.


"Your Highness" or "Your Majesty" suits me, thank you.
   87. AndrewJ Posted: March 22, 2014 at 07:37 AM (#4675271)
I mentioned in my story about Louis Sockalexis and the naming of the Indians that I could not find Sockalexis named a single time in the 1915 newspapers I searched. That included more than 300 papers around the country. As it turns out, my search engine did not include the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

In a related development, my search for items hidden in wooded areas in Manhattan did not include Central Park.
   88. Swedish Chef Posted: March 22, 2014 at 12:48 PM (#4675350)
Basically, they were native to the continents that were named after Amerigo Vespucci.

Now, naming the continents after that guy is a bigger travesty than anything else in this thread, when are you getting around to fix that?
   89. Zach Posted: March 22, 2014 at 05:18 PM (#4675444)
I commented on this in the Posnanski addendum thread, but omitting the Cleveland Plain Dealer from your extensive national search of papers writing about the Cleveland Indians is pretty ridiculous. Not that he did it on purpose or anything, but still, a bit more care next time, please?

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