In 1915, Cleveland sports writers decided to rename the local Cleveland baseball team to “Indians”. Their hope was to capitalize on the 'spirit' that led the Boston “Braves” to victory in the 1914 season. “Indians” was an invective leveled at the 1897 Cleveland “Spiders” ...because Cleveland had an 'Indian' on their team: Louis Sockalexis, a Penobscot from Maine. During the period Louis Sockalexis played for this National League team, fans of the Spiders and fans for opposing teams alike imitated war whoops and the word “Indian” was used as a slur to demean the whole team (meaning the team had 'gone Native' solely due to the presence of Louis Sockalexis). A similar analogy would be to call a mostly all-white team the “Negroes” because of a sole African-American player, or the “Chinamen” because of a lone Asian player!
100 seasons later, same team name, same team hope, same slur.
Join us in our annual event protesting Cleveland Baseball's use of the “Chief Wahoo” logo and the “Indians” team name. Since 1973, we have repeatedly objected to the degrading, racist depictions of Native peoples by Cleveland Baseball through demonstrating at Opening Day. We continue to insist that Cleveland Baseball abolish its use of the clearly bigoted, racist, and shameful “Indians” team name and the despicable “Chief Wahoo” logo. This year's demonstration should prove quite eventful given the increased attention being focused on our cause.
We meet typically two hours before the game starts. This year we hope you will join the American Indian community, our supporters, and the Cleveland American Indian Movement in the continuing fight against bigotry, stereotyping, and racism in Cleveland. Together we will send the message that racism against one of us is racism against all of us!
April 10, 2015 — 2:00 PM
"PROGRESSIVE" FIELD - GATE C, E 9TH ST, Cleveland, OH 44115