Cleveland Spiders Logo
I used to love Chief Wahoo. I thought it was an awesome, unique, fun logo that reminded me of the glory days of the 90′s. Racist? Please. Just another example of a world that has lost its sense of humor by becoming too politically correct.
But then I read Cleveland Frowns‘ “The Curse of Chief Wahoo” article with an open mind. And I became overwhelmingly convinced that Chief Wahoo—playing on the accentuated perceived features of a race—was nothing short of a sambo character. We may have all donned our Wahoo gear with innocent intent—but that doesn’t make it right. It needs to go; and it looks like we’re heading in that direction.
I was of equal opinion that the team name “Indians” should accompany Wahoo’s exile. As the cartoon accompanying the 1915 announcement of the new name shows, its origin was surely not an attempt to honor the club’s Native American former player, Louis Sockalexis.
But as Joe Posnanski, in his excellent account of the history of Sockalexis and the “Indians” name, concludes: “I don’t believe the Indians were named to honor Louis Sockalexis, not exactly. But I do believe the Indians name, as long as it exists, could honor him.” I’m not sure if I’m persuaded by Posnanski’s ultimate conclusion. But the point is that he is far smarter and more reasonable than I am, and he thinks the name could stay. So I think reasonable minds can differ.
All of this is a longwinded, roundabout way of me saying that the team should probably just start fresh and change its name. And if they do, I think the “Spiders” would be a pretty cool throwback. With that said, here’s my attempt at an updated logo: