Two days after Redskins owner Dan Snyder announced that he would create a Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation that, in his words, will "provide meaningful and measurable resources that provide genuine opportunities for Tribal communities," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell lauded Snyder's efforts, even as the organization and the league come under fire from various group who find the Redskins name offensive.
“We have been listening, but so has Dan," Goodell said Wednesday from the league meetings, via the Washington Post. That was the point of the presentation, that he has been listening. [Snyder] has visited 26 [reservations] and he has been working very closely with them, listening and learning. And there are some important needs that he has identified by having these meetings. But that was a presentation completely by the Redskins. It was their issue, and the membership appreciated hearing it.”
Last May, Snyder announced that he would never change the Redskins name, and it appears that stance hasn't changed. And to some skeptics, that remains a sticking point; the Washington Redskins Original Americans Foundation, while a nice gesture, serves as a distraction from the naming controversy. But according to Goodell, those critics are in the minority.
“This is something to your point that has been discussed for decades now. It comes up every once in a while, but people have strong views of it,” the commissioner said. “I think Dan is being very responsible in listening. It's also very clear when you look at public opinion, when you look at the polls that 90 percent of Redskins fans support the name. They believe it's something that represents pride. And the general population also supports it overwhelmingly. He's trying to be responsible in listening and recognizing that people have differing views.”
Last September, ostensibly when Goodell was still in the fact-gathering phase, he told a Washington radio station that, "If one person's offended, we have to listen" before conceding that, "ultimately, it is Dan's decision."
In October, President Barack Obama said that "he would think about changing" the Redskins name.