Friday, June 10, 2005

New Jersey Assemblyman Wants NHL Team To Change Monicker

Assemblyman Craig Stanley (Baptist-Irvington), in an effort to insert his religious fears and obsessions into the lives of all New Jersey citizens, is demanding that the New Jersey Devils NHL franchise change their nickname and mascot before moving into their new facility at Newark.

The NHL barely exists anymore. The billionaires fought with the millionaires over pennies and shut down the sport. ESPN announced that every truck-pull, billiards match, darts competition, body-building contest, and cheerleading exhibition inserted into the NHL time slots attracted more viewers than every single hockey game ever aired by them!

So, this might actually be a moot point. There may be no need to change the Devils' name, because there may be no NHL; but that's not really the point.

I get the whole movement behind removing aboriginal imagery from sports. Redskins, Chiefs, Redmen, Braves, Indians, and others are as bad as naming your team Niggers, Kikes, Wops, or Krauts. The social movement that begs the elimination of racist names is a noble movement. Ted Turner and the other owners of teams using those names will rot in hell for it.

But this notion that to use a completely fabricated notion, a fairy tale like the devil, is somehow detrimental to society is absurd.

Craig Stanley is an elected official from one of the most decrepit, dangerous areas of New Jersey. Just look at these Irvington statistics compared to the national average. I think he might find more important issues to address than the fairy-tale monicker of a team from a barely-existent sports league.

This is typical phony christian bull! If you wave enough flags of hysteria and idiocy, the people are whipped into a fervor. This helps them ignore the real problems like a savage economy, workers rights, dignity and justice for all, and hypocritical christians ruining our once-great nation.

You can contact Craig Stanley at his site: Assemblyman Craig A. Stanley (D)

He will only respond to New Jersey citizens, so I hope you will contact him if you live in the Garden State.

An excellent piece at The People's Republic of Seabrook

Leaning Toward The Dark Side's view

Here is the Associated Press report:
Devils Not Wild About Proposal To Change Name
Some Feel Image Is Satanic

POSTED: 2:08 pm EDT May 29, 2005
UPDATED: 2:21 pm EDT May 29, 2005

TRENTON, N.J. -- What chance do the New Jersey Devils give a proposal that would rename the pro hockey franchise as something a little less demonic?

Think hell freezing over.

"I can assure you the Devils name will never change, and I think there are more important things to be thinking about than something that will never happen," team CEO Lou Lamoriello said. "It's who we are and what we want to be."

The devil imagery is precisely the problem for Assemblyman Craig Stanley, who takes issue with a satanic symbol representing the state's National Hockey League team.

The Essex County Democrat is leading the charge to retire the name 'Devils' after 23 years and three Stanley Cup championships and replace it with a name chosen in a statewide competition.

"This is an age where symbolism is very important," said Stanley, whose resolution to rename the team is to be introduced in the Assembly next month. "With the team coming to a new city, Newark, I thought it was a good time to do it."

Stanley's legislative district includes Irvington and parts of Newark, where the Devils are scheduled to move into a $310 million, 18,000-seat downtown arena in September 2007. The team currently plays in the Continental Airlines Arena at the Meadowlands sports complex in East Rutherford.

Stanley said he is enthusiastic about having the arena and the team in Newark, but cool to its name and mascot.

"I've always cringed when people say they're going to see the Devils," said Stanley, a deacon at Newark's Bethlehem Missionary Baptist Church. "The merchandise, the paraphernalia is based on the actual demonic devil. Personally, it causes a little bit of an issue with me."

According to Weird N.J., a travel guide to the state's most offbeat attractions, the hockey team is named for the mythical Jersey Devil, not the Christian symbol of the antichrist.

Legend has it that the Jersey Devil -- with bat-like wings, a forked tail and oversized claws -- terrorized Pine Barrens dwellers in the 18th-century after being born the 13th child to poor South Jerseyans and morphing into a dinosaur-like beast.

The team's mascot is no beast, though. It's a 7-foot-tall, red, cartoonish figure with horns and a goatee.

The NHL's Devils acquired their name in a 1982 fan contest after a group of New Jersey investors brought the team east from Colorado, said Lamoriello. There is no chance that the name will change anytime soon, he said.

Acting Gov. Richard J. Codey also thinks the name should stay as is.

A name change would just complicate things for the team, said the acting governor, an avid sports fan.

The Devils wouldn't be the first New Jersey team to adopt a more politically correct moniker.

Athletic teams at Montclair State were dubbed the Indians till 1989, when the school changed the name to the Redtail Hawks, now the Red Hawks, out of sensitivity to Native Americans, said university spokesman Bob Quarteroni.

Stanford, once the Indians, are now the Cardinals. Marquette has gone from being the Warriors to the Golden Eagles to the Gold. And, the former St. John's Redmen are now the Red Storm.

But two Major League Baseball teams, the Atlanta Braves and Cleveland Indians, have not succumbed to pressure to change their names.

The Washington Redskins of the National Football League deflected a challenge two years ago to their name and feather-wearing mascot, arguing successfully in federal court that neither violated federal trademark law by disparaging American Indians. The Redskins started out as the Boston Braves, but were renamed to honor an early head coach who was an American Indian.

Some Indian leaders are still pressing the case against the 'Skins.

Stanley concedes his proposal received a less-than-enthusiastic reception from Devils brass.

"He's hell-bent on keeping the Devils name," Stanley said of team owner Jeff Vanderbeek, whom he spoke to by phone last week.

"I say, 'They're not playing hockey,"' he said, referring to the ongoing labor dispute that canceled the entire 2004-2005 season. "Why not do something fun and rename the team?"

© 2005 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Edited on December 24, 2006 to fix links and add labels.


The Brooklyn Gooner said...

Wow. I was unaware that all other problems had been solved in the great state of New Jersey. *rolls eyes*

DM said...

Yeah! Well, it looks like Rep Stanley has solved everything but this last important issue!

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