News & Politics

The New Yorker’s Newest Cover Takes a Big Shot at the Local NFL Team

Imagining if Redskins fans showed up at the first Thanksgiving.

Staffers in the Condé Nast subscription department might want to be on the lookout next week for cancellation requests from Ashburn, Virginia thanks to the December 1 issue of the New Yorker, which features a bold, Thanksgiving-themed criticism of the Washington NFL franchise by cartoonist Bruce McCall. The image, though festooned with burgundy-and-gold regalia, takes a hard shot at team owner Dan Snyder’s repeated intonations that the team’s name connotes “honor and respect,” even though the term is otherwise defined as a slur against Native Americans.

“It should have been quashed a long time ago,” McCall says on the New Yorker’s website. “We did everything to the Indians that we could, and it’s still going on. It seems crude and callous.”

Football fans are conflicted about the term. A poll released yesterday found that while 72 percent of people do not think the team should change its name, four out of five would not call Native Americans “redskins” to their faces.

Staff Writer

Benjamin Freed joined Washingtonian in August 2013 and covers politics, business, and media. He was previously the editor of DCist and has also written for Washington City Paper, the New York Times, the New Republic, Slate, and BuzzFeed. He lives in Adams Morgan.