SNIDER: Redskins should be ashamed

Rick Snider
July 16, 2020 - 7:43 pm

Add one more sin to the collection of Redskins owner Dan Snyder's troubled franchise. Ignorance isn't an excuse when your staff is being traumatized.

Snyder wasn't implicated in The Washington Post's jarring expose of 15 women claiming sexual harassment by co-workers and bosses at Redskins Park. But, Snyder's the final say in the company whose toxic culture has people fearing for their jobs while allowing predators to freely act immorally.

Shame once more engulfs Redskins Park and this time it isn't even about persistently losing games. It's about treating women staffers and media poorly and Snyder as the company owner should have set the proper tone that this is not permissible.

Everyone who roots for this franchise should be offended by what repeatedly happened at the team's Ashburn, Va. headquarters over many years. This isn't a half century ago when "Mad Men" belittled women. This is the era of #MeToo where nobody is entitled to mistreat anyone.

UPDATE: Snyder Issues A Rare Public Statement

Now, the alleged offenders have all been fired and at least publicly humiliated. Announcer Larry Michael "retired" on Wednesday shortly after the Post sought his comment on the allegations. Director of pro personnel Alex Santos and his assistant Richard Mann II were recently fired and implicated in the story.

Team president Bruce Allen, who was not implicated in any misdoings, was fired in December for the team's poor performance. However, he bears some of this stain as daily overseer of the company. Allen constantly bragged the culture was good at Redskins Park. Sorry, but none of this is good. If 15 people are claiming abuse, where was Allen?

Snyder hired prominent Washington attorney Beth Wilkinson to review the company's policies and alleged past misdoings. It's a standard move for any company accused of such problems. Still, maybe Wilkinson can prevent future harassment.

The problem is Redskins Park has long been a frat house. It's hardly alone in the sports culture, but that doesn't excuse such distasteful behavior. The offenders may be gone, but Snyder needs to step up to a podium and in staff meetings with Wilkinson's recommendations to prevent repeat behavior. Be the strong leader rather than someone who didn't protect his staff.

Snyder's 21 years of ownership have been one disaster after another. Just three days after agreeing to change the team's long-standing name that offended some, the Redskins now look even worse.

What is it going to take for this franchise to return to its glory days when it was the pride of Washington? For now, the team seems clueless for an answer.

Rick Snider has covered Washington sports since 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @Snide_Remarks

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