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Cleveland State University

Constitutional Law

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The Indians' Chief Problem: Chief Wahoo As State Sponsored Discrimination And A Disparaging Mark, Jack Achiezer Guggenheim Jan 1998

The Indians' Chief Problem: Chief Wahoo As State Sponsored Discrimination And A Disparaging Mark, Jack Achiezer Guggenheim

Cleveland State Law Review

This article traces the history of the Cleveland Indians and Chief Wahoo. It then suggests and assesses two methods by which the Chief Wahoo emblem may be legally challenged. The first method is to assert that Chief Wahoo, as used in Jacob's Field, is state sponsored discrimination. As such it could be challenged as a violation of equal protection or as racist speech. Alternatively, in addition to proving that the teams' actions should be deemed state actions, a new theory asserting that discriminatory state speech is a violation of the First Amendment could be advanced. Another method by which ...