Sports

Owner wants those opposed to 'Redskins' to 'try to respect' what it means to team, fans

  • In this photo taken May 5, 2013, Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder walks by players during a rookie minicamp practice session at Redskins Park in Ashburn, Va. In an exclusive interview with the Associated Press conducted Friday, Oct. 4, 2013, Obama said he would "think about changing" the Washington Redskins' name if he owned the football team, wading into the controversy over a word many consider offensive to Native Americans. "I don't know whether our attachment to a particular name should override the real legitimate concerns that people have about these things," he said, noting that Indians "feel pretty strongly" about mascots and team names that depict negative stereotypes about their heritage. Snyder has vowed to never abandon the name. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

    In this photo taken May 5, 2013, Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder walks by players during a rookie minicamp practice session at Redskins Park in Ashburn, Va. In an exclusive interview with the Associated Press conducted Friday, Oct. 4, 2013, Obama said he would "think about changing" the Washington Redskins' name if he owned the football team, wading into the controversy over a word many consider offensive to Native Americans. "I don't know whether our attachment to a particular name should override the real legitimate concerns that people have about these things," he said, noting that Indians "feel pretty strongly" about mascots and team names that depict negative stereotypes about their heritage. Snyder has vowed to never abandon the name. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)  (The Associated Press)

  • Verlin Deer In Water, a member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma shows his t-shirt during an interview in Washington, Monday, Oct. 7, 2013, calling for the Washington Redskins NFL football team to change its name, prior to the start of the Oneida Indian Nation's Change the Mascot symposium. During an interview, President Barack Obama suggested that the owner of the Washington Redskins football team consider changing its name because, the president said, the current name offends "a sizable group of people." (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

    Verlin Deer In Water, a member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma shows his t-shirt during an interview in Washington, Monday, Oct. 7, 2013, calling for the Washington Redskins NFL football team to change its name, prior to the start of the Oneida Indian Nation's Change the Mascot symposium. During an interview, President Barack Obama suggested that the owner of the Washington Redskins football team consider changing its name because, the president said, the current name offends "a sizable group of people." (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Saturday, Aug. 4, 2012 file photo, Zena "Chief Z" Williams, unofficial mascot of the Washington Redskins, signs autographs during fan appreciation day at the Redskins' NFL football training camp at Redskins Park in Ashburn, Va. The name Washington Redskins has inspired protests, hearings, editorials, lawsuits, letters from Congress, even a presidential nudge. Yet behind the headlines, it’s unclear how many Native Americans think “Redskins” is a racial slur. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

    FILE - In this Saturday, Aug. 4, 2012 file photo, Zena "Chief Z" Williams, unofficial mascot of the Washington Redskins, signs autographs during fan appreciation day at the Redskins' NFL football training camp at Redskins Park in Ashburn, Va. The name Washington Redskins has inspired protests, hearings, editorials, lawsuits, letters from Congress, even a presidential nudge. Yet behind the headlines, it’s unclear how many Native Americans think “Redskins” is a racial slur. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)  (The Associated Press)

Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder says he hopes those offended by the team's nickname will "try to respect what the name means" to the team, its fans and some Native Americans.

Snyder addressed the matter Wednesday in a letter to season-ticket holders. He cites polls and anecdotal evidence that indicate support for the name from American Indians.

Snyder says he respects the opinions of those want the name changed, but he says the team can't ignore its history.

Says Snyder: "After 81 years, the team name 'Redskins' continues to hold the memories and meaning of where we came from, who we are, and who we want to be in the years to come."

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