Among the professional ranks, the effort by the NFL and the Washington football team to retain the violent and racially derived term “Redsk*ns” has been a focus of national and international media. The legacy of racism… is an important component to the story of the Washington football team name, in addition to its violent origins in American popular culture.
The term originates from a time when Native people were actively hunted and killed for bounties, and their skins were used as proof of Indian kill. Bounties were issued by European companies, colonies, and some states, most notably California. By the turn of the 20th century it had evolved to become a term meant to disparage and denote inferiority and savagery in American culture. By 1932, the word had been a term of commodification and a commentary on the color of a body part. It was not then and is not now an honorific.
From Ending the Legacy of Racism in Sports & the Era of Harmful “Indian” Sports Mascots, a report issued by the National Congress of American Indians in October 2013.
*At least, this should be a Super Bowl ad.