washington redskins

United Church of Christ to Boycott Washington Redskins

Brad Mills / USA TODAY Sports / Reuters / RNS

Washington Redskins receiver DeSean Jackson. Brad Mills / USA TODAY Sports / Reuters / RNS

The United Church of Christ, a progressive denomination, has called on its 1 million members to boycott Washington Redskins football games and merchandise until the team drops its controversial name and mascot.

The resolution, supported by several Native American tribes, passed June 29 at the denomination’s biennial summer synod in Cleveland.

Washington-area UCC Votes to Boycott Washington NFL Team

Seattle’s Plymouth Congregational UCC has been speaking out against the name for 20 years. Image: Holly Hayes/Creative Commons

The United Church of Christ for the mid-Atlantic region passed a resolution Saturday asking its 40,000 members not to buy game tickets or wear any souvenir gear of the Washington NFL club until it changes its embattled team name.

The resolution, which also calls on the team to change its name and refrain from using American Indian imagery, passed unanimously at the UCC’s Central Atlantic Conference in Dover, Del.

“I hope this debate will continue to draw attention to an unhealed wound in our cultural fabric,” the Rev. John Deckenback, conference minister, said in a statement. “Changing the name of the Washington NFL team will not solve the problems of our country’s many trails of broken promises and discriminatory isolation of our Native American communities. However, a change in the nation’s capital can send a strong message.”