A Native American tribe straddling the Arizona-California border has refused grant money from a charity associated with the Washington Redskins.
The Original Americans Foundation’s proposed donation to the Quechan Tribe would have funded a skate park and anti-suicide programs. A tribal leader called the proposed grant “blood money” in an interview with the Associated Press.
“The sacrifice we took to say no wasn’t an easy one,” tribal leader Keeny Escalanti Sr. told the AP. “We wish we could help the kids today by taking the partnership. We’re trying to teach our community and the youth that we can do things the right way. We don’t have to accept this type of money from these people.”
The foundation has already purchased 3,000 winter coats for Native Americans and a backhoe for a tribe in Nebraska.
The Redskins name has come under fire from fifty Democratic Senators, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, and sportswriters such as Bill Simmons and Rep. Peter King (R-NY). Team owner Daniel Snyder vows to keep the name.
“For too long,” Snyder announced upon unveiling the new charitable endeavor, “the struggles of Native Americans have been ignored, unnoticed and unresolved. As a team, we have honored them through our words and on the field, but now we will honor them through our actions. We commit to the tribes that we stand together with you, to help you build a brighter future for your communities.”