Tribes push back against MLB claims that Native Americans approve of tomahawk chop

The commissioner insisted that the gesture by Atlanta Braves fans is OK with local Indigenous communities.

10/28/2021 5:17:00 AM

Native American groups pushed back Wednesday against MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred's claim that Indigenous communities support the Atlanta Braves' tomahawk chop.

The commissioner insisted that the gesture by Atlanta Braves fans is OK with local Indigenous communities.

"The Braves have done a phenomenal job with the Native American community,"Manfred saidon the field at Minute Maid Park in Houston."The Native American community in that region is wholly supportive of the Braves' program, including the chop.

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"And for me, that's kind of the end of the story," he continued."In that market, taking into account the Native American community, it works."But Jason Salsman, a spokesman for Chief David Hill of the Muscogee Nation, said Manfred can't base his opinion on any one stance from a Native community.

"If you just go out and get a group here or there and say you're good, I don't think that's how Indian Country works," Salsman said."You need to speak to the whole of Indian Country and make sure that you get a grand consensus. I wouldn't say that they have that."

The ancestral homelands of the Muscogee Nation, before its forced relocation to what is now Oklahomaalong the deadly Trail of Tearsin the 19th century, are in what is now Georgia. The tribe doesn't support the tomahawk chop."I think for us, with the tomahawk chop, you're not getting anything really authentic," Salsman said."You're getting something that's more of a caricature."

Manfred said he consulted with local Cherokees. None of the three federally recognized bands of Cherokees is based in Georgia.The Cherokee Nation and the United Keetowah Band of Cherokee Indians were forcibly removed to Oklahoma, where they remain. The Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians remains in nearby North Carolina, and Principal Chief Richard Sneed has said for years that the tribe doesn't support the Braves' cheer.

Crystal Echo Hawk, an enrolled member of the Pawnee Nation of Oklahoma who is president of the Indigenous advocacy group IllumiNative, said:"We can't let this just be a local Native issue. The imagery, chant, red face aren't just impacting locally — it's impacting all Natives."

July 23, 202101:01Stephanie Fryberg, a professor of psychology at the University of Michigan and a member of the Tulalip Tribes, said the effect of such mascots and gestures is not always immediately obvious."The Commissioner’s comment focuses solely on peoples’ attitudes, but ignores the fact that there are decades of research that document the psychological harm associated with Native-themed mascots and related gameday behavior," she said in a statement.

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The Brave's entire schtick is moronic - of course the 'tomahawk chop' is racist as well as that stupid chant. 4 hours of watching players spit and grab their nuts while listening to that imbecilic chant is enough to drive anyone mad. Unwatchable and Unlistenable. MLB Braves shaunking Colonization continues. This is what Manifest Idiocy looks like.

Slow news week FAKENEWS Lemme guess, he did a random survey with people that “claim” their great great grandmother was Cherokee. Ask real Natives. It’s a no for me. Braves NotYourMascot WTF MLB😳 Don't they do that still at Florida state football games?

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