Brian Bix
Frederick W. Thomas Professor of Law and Philosophy

Profs. Bix and Chomsky Quoted in Washington Post on University-Vikings Contract for Use of TCF Stadium

Professors Brian Bix and Carol Chomsky were quoted in a Washington Post story that discusses whether use of the Washington Redskins name at TCF Stadium could be considered to violate the contract between the University and the Vikings. Congresswoman Betty McCollum believes it does, citing a University policy that requires the school to provide an environment "free from racism...and other forms of prejudice, intolerance, or harassment." President Kaler has said he agrees with the Congresswoman that the name should be changed but thinks the facility use agreement with the Vikings does not give the school authority over the use of the Washington team name. Bix and Chomsky suggested the use of the team name would violate a different clause in the contract, one that says the Vikings "shall not take any action or use any language in its use of the facilities that might reasonably be expected to offend contemporary community standards, such as use of...language that might denigrate any class or group of people." Bill Donohue, the University's general counsel, disagreed, saying that dictating NFL nicknames was well outside the agreement's intent.