State Watch

Washington Football Team bans Native American headdresses, face paint

The Washington Football Team announced Wednesday that Native American-inspired headdresses and face paint will be banned at FedEx Field.

The last time the stadium was fully open, the team was under a different name, which was considered by many to be a racial slur for Native Americans, before they retired it in 2020. The name change brought backlash from some fans, which team president Jason Wright said is understandable but needed to happen.

"We recognize that not everyone is in favor of this change. And even the Native American community offers a range of opinions about both our past and path forward," Wright said in the statement released in July. "But in these moments, it is important to prioritize the views of those who have been hurt by our historical use of Native American language, iconography and imagery."

The NFL franchise is one of many athletic teams to adjust their name and logo due to charges of racism. The MLB's Cleveland Indians recently changed its name to the Guardians, which received both praise and criticism. Former President Trump even commented on the name change, calling it a "disgrace."

Washington will also recommend mask-wearing in the stadium as part of its new protocols. The statement noted that those policies are subject to change based on local recommendations. 

The Washington Football Team said that it expects to be at full capacity by spring. 

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