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For much of last year, Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder fended off accusations that his team's name was an offensive racial slur, insisting he would never change it to something more benign. But with outrage over the name continuing unabated — NPR's ombudsman last week advised the organization to no longer use the word — Snyder knew he had to do something to defuse the whole situation.
His solution: He's founding a charity to benefit Native Americans, called the Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation. In a letter announcing the foundation, Snyder reaffirmed his belief that the racial slur "captures the best of who we are and who we can be." And he said he'd spent four months visiting 26 reservations around the country, where residents told him —surprise! — they thought the team's moniker was just fine.
"In speaking face-to-face with Native American leaders and community members, it's plain to see they need action, not words," he wrote.