I recently came across an article on about an ad that wasn’t aired during the Super Bowl for a number of reasons, which we will get into later. The ad was released by the National Congress of American Indians the day before the Super Bowl. The ad begins with images of Native American people and the first few words make quiet the impact when they say: “Proud. Forgotten….Indian.” Then it continues to show images of different Native American people with a narrated list of the different tribes of Native Americans, and words to describe them such as: “spiritualist, survivor, patriot”, and in my opinion its very powerful. It also gives names of famous, accomplished Native Americans such as Sitting Bull, Hiawatha, Jim Thorpe, and Crazy Horse. Then it gives you more images, but now they are images of struggle. It also describes and shows images of Native Americans as teachers, mothers and fathers, ranchers, and soldiers. The ad ends with the narrated voice saying, “Native Americans call themselves many things, and the one thing they don’t..” and it ends with an image of a Washington Redskins helmet with a football next to it, and a link pops up for The powerful ad wasn’t aired for obvious reasons; one, being it’s still a controversial issue that is related to the NFL; two, there is a “no activism” rule when it comes to Super Bowl ads; three, the NFL wants to protect its brand; and four, the potential that this ad might have had a negative impact on the fact that there was another Washington team in the Super Bowl- the Seattle Seahawks. Adam Mordecai, curator and author of the article I read on Upworthy comments on the “R-word” (Redskin) saying, “…the R-word. According to the dictionary, it’s a “usually offensive” term for Native Americans. Most of the major civil rights organizations have come together to condemn it. They did a study and found out that it’s actually detrimental to the mental health of Native American citizens” (Mordecai, 2014). The Washington Redskins are not the only team with a Native American name or mascot, there are countless numbers of professional and college related sports teams who use “offensive terms” or make references to Native Americans. As Mordecai had asked in his article, “if you met a Native American, would you call them a redskin to their face?”

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Anderson, J. (2014, Feb 02). National congress of american indians releases anti-“redskins” ad. Retrieved from

Mordecai, A. (n.d.). The NFL would never let this ad air on the super bowl, so we’re gonna show you it. it’s important.. Retrieved from


  1. Interesting post! I’ve heard that the term could be taken offensively, but I didn’t realize it was such a big deal. I’m curious if the NFL will have a response to this commercial or if they will even consider becoming less discriminating.


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