Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder isn't bowing the growing pressure to change the franchise's nickname.
Snyder sent a letter to season ticket-holders stating his reasoning for wanting to keep the Redskins' name despite the president of the United States and other public officials suggesting that it's time to discard a term that some consider offensive.
"I've listened carefully to the commentary and perspectives on all sides, and I respect the feelings of those who are offended by the team name," Snyder wrote. "But I hope such individuals also try to respect what the name means, not only for all of us in the extended Washington Redskins family, but among Native Americans too."
Snyder cited a recent poll of nearly 1,000 Native Americans showing that 90% did not find the name to be offensive. He also pointed to a Richmond Times Dispatch story in which three Native American tribal leaders in Virgina did not have a problem with using Redskins.
"Our franchise has a great history, tradition and legacy representing our proud alumni and literally tens of millions of loyal fans worldwide," Snyder wrote. "We have participated in some of the greatest games in NFL history, and have won five world championships. We are proud of our team and the passion of our loyal fans. Our fans sing 'Hail to the Redskins' in celebration at every Redskins game. They speak proudly of 'Redskins Nation'in honor of a sports team they love.
"So when I consider the Washington Redskins name, I think of what it stands for. I think of the Washington Redskins traditions and pride I want to share with my three children, just as my father shared with me -- and just as you have shared with your family and friends.
"I respect the opinions of those who disagree. I want them to know that I do hear them, and I will continue to listen and learn. But we cannot ignore our 81-year history, or the strong feelings of most of our fans as well as Native Americans throughout the country. After 81 years, the team name "Redskins" continues to hold the memories and meaning of where we came from, who we are, and who we want to be in the years to come.
"We are Redskins Nation and we owe it to our fans and coaches and players, past and present, to preserve that heritage."
Snyder used a gentler tone in the letter in contrast to his more defiant statement in May when he told USA Today that the team would "NEVER" bow to pressure.
The team's lawyer, Lanny Davis, said Snyder should not have used that word.
"(T)he answer is no, I don't think saying 'all caps, never' is the right tone," Davis told 106.7 the Fan. "I think saying 'We care about people's feelings, we're respectful when anyone is offended, but we have this 80-year name that we love. We sing 'Hail to the Redskins' every Sunday at the stadium, and we say we're part of "edskins Nation.' That's our vocabulary. Those are terms of honor.' And that's what he should have said, but he, I don't think is going to say 'all caps, never' again."