There are certain moments in life in which a person or group of people say something so dumb, that no matter how wrong or stupid it may be, you can’t look away. Today, Fox News provided us with one of those moments.
Former NFL quarterback Joe Theismann was featured on segment called “Outnumbered” and asked to discuss the Washington NFL team’s mascot. He somehow managed to cover everything from Caitlyn Jenner to feminism to Native American surveys in all but eight minutes. I’ve gathered some of highlights from the interview below, but you can also watch the whole trainwreck unfold above.
The host doesn’t pull any punches in the early going, and asks Theismann his opinion on the team’s nickname right off the bat. Theismann does not disappoint with his answer:
I think that is a decision that is going to rest solely in Daniel Snyder’s hands. It’ll be his decision eventually when courts play out and we see the end-result of that. I was and always will be a Washington Redskin. I’m very proud to have worn the uniform. I’m very proud to have represented the Native-American nations of country, the Washington Redskin fans, the team itself.
As a Native American, I can personally attest to the fact that Joe Theismann makes us all very proud, and we’re so very lucky to have had him as a representative. Whenever I’m feeling down about the lack of Native athletes, it’s not Bronson Koenig or Shoni Schimmel or Jacoby Ellsbury I think of, it’s Joe Theismann.
Theismann goes on to talk about how he’s surveyed Native Americans and that everyone he’s talked to has said they’re cool with the name.
I have spoken, and this is my personal experience, I have tried to do my own survey and talk to different Native Americans in different parts of the country and everyone that I talk to, ‘Are you okay with the name?’ ‘Yes.’ ‘Are you okay with the name?’ ‘Yes.’ You have activists out there don’t want to use the name.
I don’t want to jump to conclusions, but I think I might know who Joe’s been talking to during these surveys. But forget what actual Native Americans think about the name. It’s time for Theismann to hit us with the good stuff:
The Redskin name to me as always represented something special and something sacred and something honorable.
I’m glad it represented something special and sacred and honorable to Joe Theismann. Because, ultimately, this is what matters. How the name makes him feel. Case closed. Keep the name.
But the highlight of the interview comes next, when Theismann is asked his thoughts on a hypothetical situation in which the NFL goes back and updates his Hall of Fame plaque with a new hypothetical nickname for the Washington team. I swear to you, this is the verbatim answer he gave directly after hearing the question.
It brings up interesting debate. Bruce Jenner versus Caitlyn Jenner. Bruce Jenner, they want to maybe change the medals from Bruce Jenner to Caitlyn Jenner because that is who he is now, or she is now. So I think you will always be—there will be a time in history where whatever you were you are. Whatever you will be going forward that is what you will become.
Makes. You. Think.
Mercifully, that about wrapped up the mascot discussion. In fairness, Theismann has been on-record saying he wouldn’t really care if the team underwent name change, but this interview was still not very helpful to anyone, and I’m still not exactly sure why Joe Theismann is ever invited on TV to discuss anything other than football.
So, if you happen to be a news channel executive, do us a favor—next time you want to talk about anything regarding Native Americans, especially on a segment called “Outnumbered,” feel free to give one of us a call.