Though the Washington Redskins exited early in this year’s playoffs, fans are happy in that the future of the franchise is looking good. This means fans believe going to the playoffs this season wasn’t a fluke and they can expect great things from this football team. Yet, there are many that are not happy with the team, more specifically their name. In fact, it seems to be a possible game changer subject if the team hopes to move from FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland, to a stadium inside the District of Columbia. This “suggestion” is not coming from the fans but from D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray, who feels very strongly about this.
Though many have considered the NFL team’s name a slur for years, The Washington Post reports that the team and its owners, which includes current boss Dan Snyder, have resisted changing the name. Despite this, Gray seems adamant in his stance of changing their name if they want to come back to the city.
He says that, “there’s no doubt there’s going to have to be a discussion about that, and of course the team is going to have to work with us around that issue.” If complying with Gray’s request, the football team would not be the first D.C. team and its fans would be forced to cheer for a new team. NBA’s Washington Bullets changed their name to the Wizards back in 1997 during increasing gun violence in the nation’s capital. Gray added that elsewhere other teams have also gotten rid of offensive names and mascots.
The football team moved from the District and ended up in Landover, Md. in 1997 but now is trying to move back within the city limits. The mayor brought up the fact that the federal government, not the District of Columbia, controls the land where RFK Stadium sits as well as where any replacement football stadium would likely be built.
Though the mayor said that the Redskins name would not automatically break any deal, the change in name should be discussed. He told the Washington Post that, “It has become a lightning rod, and I would be love to be able to sit down with the team … and see if a change should be made. There’s a precedent for this, and I think there needs to be a dispassionate discussion about this, and do the right thing.”
During a news conference, Gray said, “I think that if they get serious with the team coming back to Washington, there’s no doubt there’s going to have to be a discussion about that.” The lack of disgust for the name is not just limited to the mayor. Because of perceived insults to Native Americans, some newspapers, including one in D.C., won’t print the team’s nickname.
The D.C.’s alternative newspaper, the Washington City Paper, announced in October that it would no longer print the team’s official name. The publication said that the name was a “pejorative term for Native Americans.” The City Paper had an online reader poll and decided afterwards to refer to the team as the Washington Pigskins. Despite this, Snyder remains unswayed.
The dispute over the team’s name has been going on for years and in 1992, a group of Native Americans decided to file a disparagement lawsuit against the team. Unfortunately, the Los Angeles Times reported that the lawsuit was dismissed in 2009 when the Supreme Court said it would not hear the case.
Redskins To Drop Offensive Name
The Redskins’ resurgence has District politicos once again talking about what it would take to relocate the team back inside the city limits. But Mayor Vincent C. Gray (D) today suggested there would have to be a controversial prerequisite to any stadium deal: a name change, or at least discussion of one.
US National Women’s Team Wins FIFA World Cup And Spotlights Equal Pay Among Athletes
The USWNT has won their fourth World Cup and choose to celebrate by shining light to their political causes.
The US National Women’s Team (USWNT) won the FIFA Women’s World Cup with a 2-0 win over the Netherlands held in Lyon, France last July 7. The win marks the US Team’s second win at the World Cup.
Megan Rapinoe and Rose Lavelle led the USWNT to their victory. Rapinoe scored a goal during a penalty in the first half. Lavelle later surged forward with another goal eight minutes after.
Rapinoe was awarded the Golden Boot, an award for being the top goal scorer, for scoring six goals and three assists in the entire season. The 34-year-old athlete bet out her teammate Alex Morgan, who also had the same stats. However, Rapinoe took the award with 428 minutes per goal as compared to Morgan’s 490 minutes. Morgan received the Silver Boot, while Ellen White of the England Team received the Bronze Boot.
Rapinoe also won the Golden Ball; an award presented to the best player in the FIFA World Cup finals. England’s Lucy Bronze and US Team’s Rose Lavelle received the Silver and Bronze Ball, respectively.
The US team’s coach, Jill Ellis is also the first coach to win FIFA Women’s World Cup twice in the history.
The Dutch Team did not let the Americans win that easily. The US team struggled to get a goal in the first half. All this thanks to Netherlands’ goalkeeper Sari van Veenendaal, who block a volley from Julie Ertz and another two from Morgan.
The US Team’s 2019 win is their fourth in the eight editions that they’ve joined. However, this is one of the most historic because of the political protests done by the team, with Rapinoe mostly leading it.
Equal Pay and Civil Rights Causes
For years, women soccer players have been fighting for equal pay. However, this year, the issue was highlighted because of the US team were blatantly talking about it in every media.
As the US team take a bow on their latest win, shouts of celebration erupted. What’s deafening wasn’t only the shouts of joy, but also chants of “Equal Pay!” rocking the stadium.
In 2016, Rapinoe with four members of the USWNT filed a Charge of Discrimination against the United States Soccer Federation for wage discrimination. The women athletes cited instances when the women’s team were paid less than their male peers.
This discrepancy is glaring, especially with the fact that the USWNT has won their third World Cup in 2016 (and now their fourth), while the men’s team have not yet advanced past quarterfinals in the recent years.
Rapinoe protested by using her platform in sharing their causes in the media. In a game in 2016, Rapinoe gave the nod to former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s protest by taking a knee during the National Anthem.
Rapinoe had to give up taking the knee when the United States Soccer Federation adopted a rule requiring players to stand and honor the flag.
Since then, Rapinoe stands without singing the National Anthem or placing her right hand over her chest.
Aside from Rapinoe’s refusal to sing the National Anthem, her interview with Eight by Eight started her feud with the US President.
It all started with a reporter asking Rapinoe if she was excited to visit the White House. The superstar athlete scoffs and tells the reporter that she is not going to the White House. Furthermore, she tells the reporter that the Women’s Team will not be invited to visit at all.
The remark prompted President Donald Trump to respond on Twitter. President Trump wrote. “I am a big fan of the American Team, and Women’s Soccer, but Megan should WIN first before she TALKS! Finish the job!”
The President’s tweet prompted Sue Bird, Rapinoe’s partner, to write a post in The Players Tribune titled So the President F*cking Hates My Girlfriend. In the article, Bird emphasized that President Trump has never invited a WNBA champion to a White House, contrary to the President’s tweet that athletes love coming to the White House.
Since then, Rapinoe and the rest of the US Team have been invited to the House of Representatives and Senate.
Now that the US team secured their fourth win, the team aims to continue the conversation on equal pay among national teams.
Cori ‘Coco’ Gauff Continues To Wow In Wimbledon
Cori “Coco” Gauff wins over the audience at Wimbledon.
Cori “Coco” Gauff secured another victory at Wimbledon on Friday against Slovenian veteran Polona Hercog. The 15-year old Atlanta tennis player advances to the fourth round after winning a match in the All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club.
On Friday’s match with Hercog, Gauff had a rough start. Hercog led the first match with six match points versus Gauff’s 3. However, Gauff did not lose confidence and came back with a 7-6 and a 7-5 victory in her favor.
The Wimbledon crowd motivated Gauff, as the teen’s fans grow in number. “The support has been outstanding. Every match they’re calling her name. I sit there and go, like, ‘What in the world is going on?’,” Gauff’s father Corey told reporters.
Gauff also told ESPN how much the audience supported her. “The crowd was amazing, even when I was down a match point they were still cheering me on,” she says.
During the match, Gauff impressed Hercog after coming back from the loss in the first round. Hercog’s slices defeated Gauff’s backhand, which had been the teen’s main weapon. However, the teen adjusted and started serving Hercog with her own slices instead of attacking Hercog.
Mats Wilander, a multiple grand slam winner himself told CNN, “I thought that Coco tactically changed her game, which is very encouraging to me. She didn’t hit her way through Hercog so to speak, she was slicing the ball back and giving Hercog no pace suddenly. That’s for me the biggest sign of something special in Coco.”
In the last match, Hercog missed two forehand plays. During a break, Hercog called for a trainer to work on the onset of leg cramps. Gauff went on a bathroom break and came back with the same motivation from the previous marathon rally.
Gauff is now the youngest player in the Open. After qualifying in the tournament’s main draw during the wild card stage, the teen sensation faced her first match with her childhood idol, Venus Williams.
“I’m still in shock,” Gauff said about her qualifying into the tournament, “Playing against the top players in the field is going to be a different feel.”
Big Win Over Williams
Gauff shot to fame last July 1 when she defeated Venus Williams in her first round at the tournament. Williams, now 39, is out of the competition with match points 6-4 and 6-4 in favor of Gauff.
Gauff considers Williams as an idol and one of the reasons why she chose to compete. The teen broke down in tears after her match with the tennis legend.
“I don’t really know how to feel, this is the first time I’ve cried after a match, after winning,” said Gauff. “I never thought this would happen. I’m living my dream right now, not many people get to say that.”
According to CNN, Williams shared good tidings to Gauff after their match. The tennis veteran said, “Congratulations, keep going, and good luck.” The starstruck teen replied, “I just told her I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t[sic] for her, she’s so inspiring. I’ve always wanted to tell her that, but I’ve never had the guts to before.”
Before her match with Williams, Gauff had to walk a hallway full of William’s photos, each one holding a tournament trophy. Gauff’s father recalled feeling nervous that Gauff may feel intimidated while walking that stretch of hallway.
“She’s got her earphones on, she’s listening to music. She’s walking and I’m walking behind her and I’m hoping she’s not intimidated because as we’re walking we see Venus holding up a trophy, go a little further, Venus [is] holding up another trophy,” Corey Gauff shared laughing.
“Go a little bit further, there’s another picture of Venus holding up the trophy and in my mind I’m thinking, just don’t look to the left or right. Just keep going straight ahead. You need no reminders that she won this five times.”
Williams started her professional career in tennis at the age of 14. Nineteen years ago, Williams won her first Grand Slam Singles title defeating Lindsay Davenport.
Considered as an American tennis prodigy, Gauff has been touted to be the next Serena Williams. Last year, Gauff won the French Open girl’s championship. Her Women’s Tennis Association singles standing rose sharply within the last eight months, dropping from 874th to the 301st place.
Israel Folau ‘GoFundMe’ Page Shut Down; Joins List of Unsuccessful Campaigns
Israel Folau’s GoFundMe page was removed today joining the growing list of “ridiculous” campaigns.
GoFundMe removed Israel Folau’s campaign after violating the for-profit crowdfunding platform’s rules. Folau used the website to ask for funds to back his legal action against Rugby Australia (RA) for wrongful termination.
A spokeswoman for GoFundMe, Nicola Britton said, “as a company, we are absolutely committed to the fight for equality for LGBTIQ+ people and fostering an environment of inclusivity.”
According to the site’s Terms and Conditions, the company may forfeit your GoFundMe page if you are running “campaigns [that are] deem, [in the site’s] sole discretion.” In other words, “legal defense of alleged crimes associated with hate, violence, harassment, bullying, discrimination, terrorism, or intolerance of any kind relating to race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, sex, gender or gender identity, or serious disabilities or diseases,” is not allowed.
Folau asked the public to donate A$3 million ($2.1 million) for his legal battle with RA. The page went live last week and already received about A$760,000 ($530,000) donations — which will be refunded after shutting Folau’s campaign.
RA terminated Folau’s contract due to the star player’s Instagram posts that proclaim hate against LGBTQIA+. According to Folau, his termination was related to his religion. He is suing RA claiming that his removal was an act of religious discrimination.
Chief executive Raelene Castle announced that RA has terminated Folau’s contract due to the “values and the qualities of inclusion, passion, integrity, discipline, respect, and teamwork.”
Folau posted that “hell awaits you” to a list of people including homosexuals last April 10. According to BBC, RA gave warnings to Folau related to his anti-gay social media posts in the past.
GoFundMe‘s Social Fundraising Strategy
Folau is not the only one who’ve used the GoFundMe website to raise funds.
According to its website, GoFundMe is the largest social fundraising platform. Launched in 2010, the company boasts a network of 70 million donors.
Fundraising campaigns range from education, medical, to memorial assistance. Individuals can set up a campaign and share their story to GoFundMe‘s donors. Nonprofit organizations can also create a campaign to raise money for their projects.
In 2016, CEO Rob Solomon revealed that celebrities and influencers who used the platform increased over time. Notable personalities who donated to their chosen causes are Taylor Swift, Kristin Bell, and Jon Bon Jovi.
Aside from donations, famous personalities also used the GoFundMe platform to raise money for causes that they believed in. Rapper The Game raised money for a community police officer in Arkansas.
In 2018, The Times Up Movement launched a GoFundMe campaign to support the victims of sexual harassment and assault with legal fees assistance. It raised a total of $24.2 million backed by 21,664 people in its 18-month run.
Sarah Hyland received backlash when she promoted a GoFundMe page dedicated to raising funds for her uncle’s hospitalization and cousin’s funeral costs last year. Most of the backlash is coming from the fact that Hyland reportedly gets over $100,000 per episode in Modern Family.
Other ridiculous GoFundMe campaigns
Reporter Paul Johnson has criticized Folau for using the GoFundMe platform to raise money for his legal battle. Aside from the campaign being tagged as “self-serving,” there were also criticisms about the campaign’s target amount.
Josh Bornstein, an employment lawyer from Maurice Blackburn Lawyers, tweets, “Israel Folau’s case, should not cost more than 300k.”
Aside from Folau, numerous failed campaigns that have since made the fundraisers infamous.
In 2016, a fan named Jeremy Piatt set up a GoFundMe campaign to help Kanye West out of debt after the rapper/entrepreneur ranted on Twitter on how he is broke and can not create his art due to his financial restraints.
Last March, a couple pleaded guilty to federal charges for setting up a GoFundMe account for a homeless veteran to con donors into giving money to them. Their GoFundMe campaign raised nearly $400,000 in 2017. After raising the money, the homeless vet who coerced with the couple sued them on suspicions of withholding money raised on his behalf. The legal suit opened investigations that out-ted the plan of theft through deception in the open.
Another controversial GoFundMe campaign is from an Instagram couple who was asking for money to fund a cycling trip in Africa. Many people criticized the influencers for asking strangers to support their lavish lifestyle while refusing to get a job.
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