Former Washington Redskins cornerback Darrell Green has come forth to defend comments made July 23 regarding the team name and statements he made in a radio interview earlier this week that incorrectly construed what he said as a call for the team to change the Redskins name.
Earlier this week, in an interview with WTOP-FM, former Washington Redskins superstars and Pro Football Hall of Fame members Art Monk and Darrell Green conceded the term "redskins" could be considered offensive to some and a conversation about a name change "could be considered."
"It deserves and warrants conversation because somebody is saying, 'Hey, this offends me,' and then you have a conversation," Green said Thursday.
Media reports immediately surfaced, reporting the pair had called for, or at least supported, the idea and ongoing controversy suggesting the name change.
The next day, Green clarified his remarks in an interview with 106.7 The Fan, a D.C.-area radio station.
"What my real comment in response to the question was, 'Does it deserve merit?'" Green clarified. "And my comments were that, 'Look, if it offended somebody – if somebody was offended, then I think it merits at least a discussion.' I mean, goodness, I mean, people should be able to say 'Hey, you offended me' and somebody should be able to have a dialogue. Now, where it lands, that’s another thing."
Later during the interview, Green made his position abundantly clear.
"In no way I want to see the Redskins change their name,” Green told the hosts and radio audience. "So that just makes that clear. And I’ll speak for Art, there’s no way he wants it, and I guarantee he didn’t say it, and I know I didn’t say it.”
The ongoing discussion, debate, controversy, non-issue that has occurred this offseason led team owner Daniel Snyder to declare he would never change the team name. On May 10, Snyder told USA Today, "We'll never change the name," Snyder said. "It's that simple: NEVER—you can use caps."
One week prior to Snyder's comments, a so-called "Native American chief" was interviewed on Redskins Nation, a show that is produced, staffed and hired by Redskins owner Dan Snyder. The team proudly announced the news and the support of someone who could put a face on the story.
In the interview, the chief declared, "We don't have a problem with [the name] at all; in fact we're honored. We're quite honored."
Nearly two months after the Redskins interview with the chief, Deadspin.com writer Dave McKenna reported, "It turns out that the 'full-blooded American Inuit chief' is neither a full-blooded American Inuit nor a chief in any formal sense of the term." The chief was not a chief after all. The Redskins had been duped.
Hopefully Darrell Green's closing comments Friday will bring the story to a simmer (not to mention training camp has started) when he pointed out other cases in the news that have fueled the fire in the ongoing debate of fairness and equality.
With the Redskins in particular, as Green noted in his 106.7 interview, there isn't anyone that can stand up and adequately represent them.
“See, Rodney King has a face. Trayvon Martin has a face. Some of these issues have a face and a personality,” Green noted. “One thing I will say on the Redskins side of it, there is no face or personality.”