On last night's “The Daily Show," correspondent Jason Jones separately interviewed a group of Native Americans who explained why the Washington Redskins' name is offensive and a group of Redskins fans who defended the name.
Several of the Redskins fans told "The Daily Show" that they had Native American heritage, but couldn't pinpoint exactly how much (video below). They also claimed that "Redskins" was a compliment.
The Native Americans said that the word "Redskins" was originally used as a description of how many Native Americans had been killed by settlers in the early days of America. The Native Americans mentioned living in the Washington D.C. area and feeling bombarded by the "racist" name.
The Redskins fans said that they would like to meet some Native Americans in person to discuss the controversy, but when Jones brought the Native American group into the room, the Redskins fans went silent for a few seconds, noted Salon.com.
The segment was originally filmed on Sept. 13 in a Washington D.C. hotel, but before it aired last night, the Redskins fans complained of unfair treatment by “The Daily Show.”
“This goes way beyond mocking. Poking fun is one thing, but that’s not what happened,” Redskins fan Kelli O’Dell told The Washington Post. “It was disingenuous. The Native Americans accused me of things that were so wrong. I felt in danger. I didn’t consent to that. I am going to be defamed.”
“They told us they were going to have a fan panel, and, at some other time, they were going to do a panel with Native Americans,” said Redskins fan Brian Dortch. “So I said back, ‘Just to clarify, specifically, we’re not doing a cross-panel discussion right?’ The producer said, ‘Yeah, right. That would be too serious for Comedy Central.'"
“The Daily Show” and Comedy Central declined to comment.
One of the Native Americans, Amanda Blackhorse, recalled, “I said to them, ‘You sound like an alcoholic, someone who’s in denial and who doesn’t want to believe what they’re doing is not right.' They don’t see anything wrong with it."
O’Dell countered, “I was told that I was ‘psychologically damaging Native American children,’ and every time we tried to say something, we got cut off."
“My heart goes out to them because they are people, too,” added Tara Houska, another one of the Native Americans. “But it’s a weird position for them to take, because someone is crying over the loss of their offensive mascot when I am right there, standing in front of them. I don’t think they’re racist. I think their mascot is racist.”
O’Dell claimed that she told a producer for "The Daily Show" to tear up her consent form, but he wrote her an email that stated: “I’m also sorry to hear that the shoot was so upsetting for you & the other panelists! I know we can’t destroy any releases & we have consent to air everything we shot, but I also know not everything will make it to air.”
O’Dell then called the Washington D.C. police, but was told that no crime had been committed.
For their part, the Native Americans celebrated the interview.
Ryan RedCorn posted a picture of the group with Jones and wrote on Instagram:
We had a blast shooting with @thedailyshow Jason Jones is a master of his craft. We will keep you in the loop as to when the show airs but many thanks to them for amplifying our voices to #changethename