Updated at 5:53 p.m. ET
The use of Native American imagery as team mascots has drawn plenty of pushback in recent years, and at least one MLB radio announcer has had enough.
Blue Jays play-by-play man Jerry Howarth said he won’t be referring to Cleveland’s MLB franchise as the “Indians” when he calls the ALCS between the teams beginning Friday.
“For the rest of my career I will not say ‘Indian’ or ‘Brave,’ and if I was in the NFL I would not say ‘Redskins,’” Howarth said Tuesday on “The Jeff Blair Show” on Toronto’s Sportsnet 590 The FAN .
Howarth said he made a conscious decision to avoids the terms almost 25 years ago after reading a letter from a member of a First Nation, who told him he found them offensive.
“He just wrote it in such a loving, kind way,” Howarth said. “He touched my heart.”
While the NFL’s Washington Redskins have received the most criticism for their mascot, Cleveland’s baseball team hasn’t been immune. ESPN personality Bomani Jones has been seen wearing a shirt with the words “Caucasians” in the style of “Indians” on television, a reference to the caricature logo depicting a Native American with stereotypical features.