The Best Super Bowl Ad You Haven’t Seen

Every year the Super Bowl draws attention not only for the game but for the commercials that run between the plays.  This year there were stand out commercials that warmed our hearts, but there was one commercial that didn’t make the airways that is worth taking a look at.

The ad was developed by the National Congress of American Indians and really drives home the Native perspective of what it means to be a Native American, and what it definitely does not mean, in America today.

In 2004 Dr. Stephanie Fryberg, of Stanford University, conducted a study on the effects of these ‘Indian’ names, mascots and logos.  According to Fryberg’s study, “American Indian social representations were associated with lower self-esteem for American Indians and higher self-esteem for European Americans.”  This low self-esteem is serious as currently the suicide rate for Native young people is at 18 percent, which is the highest for all American youth and more than double the rate of any other group.

Personally I don’t see why the NFL, the team, and the fans are holding so tightly to a name that is potentially offensive to the 5.2 million American Indian or Alaska Native people in the US.  I’m sure if the name were to be changed it would not affect the players’ ability to catch a football, and let’s be real for a team that hasn’t made it to the Super Bowl since 1992 a change couldn’t hurt.

If you agree has a variety of ways to get involved including:

  • Write to Roger Goodell at NFL Commissioner, 345 Park Ave., New York, NY 10154
  • Call the NFL league office at 212-450-2000.
  • Send a message to Commissioner Goodell on Twitter @nflcommish with the hashtag, #ChangeTheMascot

In closing, below are the words of the great Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. which are also worth a moment’s reflection at the very least.

“Our nation was born in genocide when it embraced the doctrine that the original American, the Indian, was an inferior race. Even before there were large numbers of Negroes on our shores, the scar of racial hatred had already disfigured colonial society. From the sixteenth century forward, blood flowed in battles of racial supremacy. We are perhaps the only nation which tried as a matter of national policy to wipe out its indigenous population. Moreover, we elevated that tragic experience into a noble crusade. Indeed, even today we have not permitted ourselves to reject or to feel remorse for this shameful episode. Our literature, our films, our drama, our folklore all exalt it.”

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Andrea Perri

I came to Campaign Consultation with a strong background in social work and community organizing. I am also a former Peace Corps health volunteer who served in The Gambia working on maternal and child health care projects.In my role as Project Specialist, I assist with project research, content development and other support for the Social Innovation Fund, George Washington University Freshman Day of Service and other projects.Read more.

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