The Cherokee, a legendary Jeep 4×4 almost in its 50s, may well have to change its name, as the chief of the eponymous Native American tribe believes the time has come for businesses and sports teams in the United States to stop using their name.
The chief of the Cherokee tribe, Chuck Hoskin Jr, “told the group that he did not tolerate the use of + Cherokee + by their business,” a spokeswoman for the tribe confirmed to AFP on Monday. He made this known to Jeep’s parent company, the Stellantis group, resulting from the merger between the French groups PSA and the Italian-American Fiat Chrysler, by videoconference on January 29.
Contacted by AFP, the automaker had not responded Monday afternoon.
“I think the time has come, in this country, for companies and sports teams to remove Amerindian names, images, and mascots from their products, jerseys and teams,” the Cherokee chief had justified in a statement sent on January 14 to the American magazine Car and Driver, which had requested it. “I’m sure that was well intentioned, but it does not honor us to have our name written on the side of a car,” he still lamented.
Jeep launched this 4×4 in 1974, and several models have succeeded since.
“The best way to honor ourselves is to learn more about our government, our role in this country, our history, our culture and our language and to have a constructive dialogue with the tribes recognized by the federal government on the appropriation cultural, ”Chuck Hoskin Jr.
Under pressure, the Washington football team and the Cleveland baseball team have also recently dropped their names borrowed from Native American tribes, the Redskins and the Indians respectively.
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