As the controversy over the name and logos of the Washington Redskins broils on, I want to bring attention to two more sadly overlooked naming controversies: The Boston Celtics and Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
These two teams mascots and names clearly degrade those of Irish heritage, portraying them out to be drunkards, brawlers, and/or leprechauns. These names aren't being used in any way to honor the Irish, merely to capitalize on stereotypes, such as shamrocks or leprechauns, in much the same manner as the Redskins name is clearly deriding Native Americans, or how the Cleveland Indians mascot, Chief Wahoo is nothing more than a racist caricature.
I simply don't understand how these teams are allowed to keep their nationalist caricatures which are clearly demeaning of Irishmen, while still maintaining less controversy than other teams named after Native Americans like the Atlanta Braves or Kansas City Chiefs.
So to close, I'd like to call on some of the sportswriters in the industry. If we're going to call out some teams for having demeaning names or slogans, much like the NCAA forced the clearly offensive Fighting Sioux of the University of North Dakota to abandon their name or face sanctions, then we need to do it to other teams with offensive names as well, even if they aren't towards Native Americans.