It is not known when the team will make the name change, however, it is not expected to be soon. The owners have a lot to do before the 2021 season begins.
The Cleveland Indians, the sports organization that for 105 years has used the image and nickname of Native Americans, has announced its decision to stop. Thus, the baseball team becomes one of the last to remove these references from its name.
Last July, the franchise announced that it would revise its name after other sports teams in a similar situation announced their name changes. In a statement, they explained that they were in a review process and that they would provide details soon.
The Cleveland Indians team logo outside Progressive Field before they play an intrasquad game during summer workouts in Cleveland, Ohio in July 2020. | Image: Getty Images.
The process of finding a name and developing a brand that allows the team and the fans to identify themselves is complex. During all these years, protests for the name have been held on a regular basis outside Cleveland's Progressive Field.
When the organization decided to change the image of the Chief Wahoo to a block C on the caps in 2018, it was considered a first step towards a positive solution to the issue. However, the protest over the name continued and has led to a decision to change the name.
ADVANCING STEP BY STEP
For decades Native American organizations such as the National Congress of American Indians, have passed resolutions regarding how harmful these names and mascots on teams are, with the support of the social sciences.
Now the Cleveland team is taking the lead in embracing change and leading it, commented the Oneida Nation of New York. This organization has led the way in Change the Mascot Movement over the years.
"In our statement in June 2020, we acknowledge the importance of taking a leadership role in diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts across the community and enhancing our support for underserved and underrepresented groups," says the official statement.
"After reflecting upon those discussions, we believe our organization is at its best when we can unify our community and bring people together - and we believe a new name will allow us to do this more fully," the statement concludes.
CHOOSING A NEW NAME
A source reported after the official announcement of the name change, that the team would later choose the new name that they will use with the help of fans of the game and the general public.
Another source said that the sports organization plans to keep the name of its team in the next season 2021 and that it would be for the following season, 2022, that the name change would be made in the uniforms and stadium.
But Cleveland is not the only sports team that has faced this situation. There are other sports organizations such as The Atlanta Braves of the MLB, Kansas City Chiefs of the NFL, and Chicago Blackhawks of the NHL that carry Native American imagery in their names.
It is not known if Cleveland will use any ofthe names proposed so far:
Clevelands Spiders, Blues, Bronchos, Naps, Forest Citys, or Rocks. What is clear is that the name change corresponds to a change in the uniforms and in the image of the stadium, something that will take some time to implement.