It must be that time of year again. The Washington Redskins are being criticized for their allegedly offensive nickname. “Why, we white (and to a lesser extent, other-colored) people who have appointed ourselves the arbiters of propriety find fault with this. Although it’s a literal description of pigmentation, ‘Redskin’ must change.”
The arguments on either side of this issue are so entrenched that they barely need repeating, but here goes.
- Con: Any Indian-themed name is, by definition, offensive. I’m too stupid to draw a distinction between a college calling its teams the Hurons, and Chief Wahoo. It doesn’t matter than I’ve never seen an Indian, and wouldn’t know how to behave if I did, but I believe that anatomically accurate Redskins logo is part of the problem. You can’t honor an ethnicity by naming a team after it, you can only insult it. The Notre Dame Fighting Irish and their drunk Mick of a mascot don’t count because I’ve chosen to apply a double standard. White privilege and all that.
- Pro: No sports team would ever give itself a degrading name. There are no San Jose Jackballs or Kansas City Retards. Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder, despite his thousands of other transgressions, sees Indians to be worth emulating and honoring. Same deal with Jerry Jones and cowboys, Zygi Wilf and Vikings, etc.
Why don’t we go right to the source and see how our Indian friends choose to name their own teams when free of interference?
Last week CYC went on the road, driving through the Navajo Nation, the semi-autonomous area that encompasses a large chunk of northeastern Arizona and parts of Utah and New Mexico. There are 12 high schools on the nation. They operate under the auspices of tribal government, and are attended and staffed almost entirely by Navajo. Here are what 5 of those schools have selected for their nicknames and logos:
- Red Mesa (Teec Nos Pos, AZ) Redskins.
- Window Rock (AZ) Fighting Scouts, whose logo is a stylized Indian complete with feather and headband.
- Tuba City (AZ) Warriors, again with a feathered human head for a logo.
- Whitehorse (Montezuma Creek, UT) Raiders, whose logo is a headdressed Indian atop a horse, brandishing a spear.
- Shiprock (NM) Chieftains, another Indian with a headdress for a logo.
The teams of the only college on the Nation, Dine College, are also named the Warriors.
That was a long preview, but it got us to an irrefutable point. Now to the good stuff that we can all agree on, the Carnival itself.
We’ll start with Catherine at All Things Finance, who says it’s important to teach your teenagers about credit cards and then writes like a teenager to emphasize her point:
Teaching your child financial responsibility is one of the most important tools you brace them with.
“Teaching your child financial responsibility” is not a tool, just like an adjustable wrench is not an abstract phrase. Catherine also graduated college with $90,000 in student loans, which means we can add her to the endless list of authorities on this tired topic.
Upon further review, it seems that Catherine was our Retard of the Month 2 short months ago. We didn’t catch it immediately because she’s writing for a different blog now. Still, kudos to her for getting back up on the horse. Now all she needs is an editor. Well, that and $90,000.
If the grossly indebted college graduate is the #1 stereotype among CoW submitters, the insurance salesman trying to increase his business by sending us a post is a close second. R.J. Weiss at WIA Group (it stands for Weiss Insurance Agencies) asks a fantastic rhetorical question, “Should my spouse have life insurance?” You’re not going to believe this, but the answer is yes. And you’ll never guess whom R.J. thinks you should buy your next policy from.
How much crappier can this week’s CoW get? How about a cut-and-paste Wikipedia job? Take it away, prince ade (sic) at Omobaone.blogspot.com, and if a site has a Blogspot URL you know it’s got to be good. Prince ade lifted a couple of paragraphs from the entry on Carlos Slim Helú. Great job, prince.
The remarkable Neal Frankle returns to the CoW, this time guest posting at Free From Broke. Neal has an opinion on life insurance too, and his is considerably less enthusiastic than that of that guy from a couple of submissions ago whose name we already forgot.
Bryan Chau of Success Pen Pal has submitted before, but needs to get the hang of this. One submission per, Ace. He submitted 3, which normally means we’d reject all of them on principle, but continuing with the inadvertent theme of this week’s CoW we decided to run it anyway. How to handle rejection and success, or something.
Ross Garner at Wallet Hub restores a little dignity to this fiasco with his piece on another Washington debate, this one the mortgage interest income tax deduction. Some lawmakers think the current deduction is too generous to wealthy people, others think the deduction ought to be eliminated wholesale because the federal government needs more of our money, no one whose opinion means anything seems to think that the income tax structure should be dismantled and started again from scratch with a flat deduction for everyone and a flat rate for everyone beyond the basic deduction, with no exceptions.
(Pro tip: “$” is called the dollar sign. It eliminates the need to use the word “dollars,” e.g. “$1 million dollars,” by reducing the word to one simple character.)
Speaking of deductions, Harry Campbell at Your PF Pro points out how you can deduct appropriately documented moving expenses from your taxable income. If you move at least 50 miles, or get audited by an IRS agent who doesn’t know how to measure distances on Google Maps, you might qualify.
Dividend Growth Investor brings quantity and quality every week. Last month he cashed out the index funds in his old 401(k) that was eligible for a rollover, putting them in an IRA. Then, he split the money among 20 dividend stocks. He also articulates his philosophy in a beautifully succinct manner. In the comments, no less, rather than in the article proper:
I would rather buy an outstanding company at a fair price, than a mediocre one at a low price.
Some contributors to the CoW put negligible effort into it, as referenced above. Then there’s PKamp3 at DQYDJ.net, who returns with another of his trademark calculators. This week’s will determine the price change on a barrel of crude oil on any 2 post-May 20, 1987 dates you choose. (Both West Texas Intermediate and Brent.)
It was on that very day that the King, Jerry Lawler, sued King Harley Race for use of that honorific. A wrestling Battle Royal of a different kind, and a suitable segue for the latest from Jason at Hull Financial Planning.
We’ve spoken time and again – in fact, we wrote a book on the topic – about how you should focus on your net worth rather than your income. Jason takes it one step further, arguing that even a focus on net worth can be detrimental. To paraphrase Jason, if you measure daily changes in your net worth, you’re going to be happy twice and disappointed 29 times every month.
And we’re done. Thanks again for coming, and we’ll see you tomorrow.