Opinion – monitor
A leader of the American Indian tribe known as “Cherokee” said that the “Jeep” car manufacturer should stop using the tribe’s name commercially, as it has done since 1974.
“I think it is wrong to use our name as a trademark for its cars, to enrich and make profits,” Chuck Hoskin added in his interview to the American “CNN” television channel, stressing that “this name belongs to our people.”
The Cherokee leader said, “The time has come, in this country, for companies and sports teams to pull American / Indian names, images and symbols from their products, shirts and teams,” adding, “I am sure that their intentions are good, but we are not honored to have our name on the front of a car.” He called on those concerned to honor the “Cherokee” tribe by seeking to introduce it and its values, “our role in this country, our history, our culture and our language, and by pursuing a constructive dialogue with the tribes recognized by the federal government regarding the recovery of cultural heritage,” as he put it.
For her part, Christine Starns, a spokeswoman for the “Jeep” company, was quick to reply that its firm “carefully selected” the name “Cherokee” as a trademark for its products “in honor of the Native American people and in honor of their nobility, courage and pride.” Starns expressed the industrial company’s readiness “today more than ever” to open a “respectful and open dialogue with the chief leader of the Cherokee people, Chuck Hoskin JR.”
It should be noted that two sports teams in Washington and Cleveland recently gave up their name, which has the connotation associated with the American Indian tribes, and the two teams are “Redskin” (red skin) and “Indians” (Indians).