Posted on October 28, 2021

MLB Commissioner Backs Atlanta Braves’ Nickname, Tomahawk Chop Fan Celebration

Jacob Calvin Meyer, Washington Times, October 27, 2021

Rob Manfred may be trying to mend some fences with Atlanta after yanking the MLB All-Star Game out of the Georgia city earlier this year to protest the state’s new voting laws.

Speaking Tuesday before Game 1 of the World Series in Houston, Manfred cited the team’s relationship with the American Indian community while defending Atlanta’s nickname and its “tomahawk chop” fan celebration.

“It’s important to understand that we have 30 markets around the country. They aren’t all the same,” Manfred said. “The Braves have done a phenomenal job with the native American community.”

Manfred added that the American Indian community in the region is “wholly supportive” of the Braves and the tomahawk chop.

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Manfred’s respect for localized decision-making comes just days before the Fall Classic shifts from Houston to Atlanta (Game 3 is Friday) — and several months after the commissioner took a distinctly different tack on the Georgia Legislature and governor’s approval of new voting laws in that state.

“I have decided that the best way to demonstrate our values as a sport is by relocating this year’s All-Star Game,” Manfred said in April. {snip}

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Opinions of Atlanta’s nickname and the tomahawk chop are varied within the American Indian community. The National Council of American Indians has called for the team to drop the nickname and ban the celebration.

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