Navajo Nation president watches game with Dan Snyder: So Native Americans support Redskins name?

Navajo Nation president Ben Shelly took in the Washington-Arizona NFL game on Sunday with team owner Daniel Snyder, which was made obvious when Fox Sports cut to a picture of the two in the box together early in the game, and put a graphic on the screen identifying Shelly.

Which means, of course, that the Navajo Nation supports the team’s use of the Redskins name, right? Because otherwise, what’s the big deal?

Well, turns out that Shelly is the soon-to-be-former president of the Navajo Nation, having been trounced in his bid for re-election in August, finishing a distant seventh (1) in a primary.

So what may have happened that led to his effective removal from office by voters after one term in the post? Among other things, he went against the wishes of the nation’s tribal council in his public support of Snyder regarding the use of the Redskins name. The tribal council voted 9-2 on a resolution in April to formally oppose the use of the name Redskins by the NFL team.

There’s that, and also issues with a charity golf tournament that he allowed Snyder’s Original Americans Foundation to co-sponsor, resulting in the loss of several tournament sponsors who weren’t aware of the presence of the NFL team in the tournament until literally the last minute.

That didn’t stop the team’s Redskins Facts sham from tweeting a screenshot of the Fox pic to its following.

Tone deaf.

– Column by Chris Graham


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