If you disagree, show me the evidence that the Iroquois knew of the four races before Columbus. Good luck.
But this color claim is irrelevant to my argument. I haven't condemned every use of the word "red" as applied to Indians. I've condemned only the word "redskin," which most Native people consider an ethnic slur. You're wasting time defending the color red when I'm talking about the specific word "redskin."
What the evidence says
"Redskins Start Bloodletting Today," "More Cuts Likely to Follow Full-Scale Redskin Warfare," "Redskins Ambushed," "Redskins Back on the Warpath" and "Giants Massacre Redskins: General Custer Avenged" were sports headlines in the 20th century.
Nineteenth-century news headlines were "Custer's Men Lured Into Trap by Wily Redskins," "On the Warpath ... Redskins Attack," "Redskins Sent to the Happy Hunting Ground" and "Ready for Battle ... The Rebellious Redskins."
— "Hey Redskin: Go back to the Indian Reservation and make some illegal booze." (rec.sport.pro-wrestling)
— "These redskin c***sucks up at the reservation are now claiming that THEY own the portion of Nebraska that pertains to Whiteclay....Times like this make me wish Custer had access to air support and a couple of tactical nukes." (alt.tasteless)
— "Hop down to Any Boat store. Don't you know how to read? I bet your one of the redskin, indian whoop de do's who object to seeing sports teams demeaning native americans and bitch about everything." (alt.scooter)
— "I am getting f***ing tired of these damn redskins belly aching about how the paleface came and stole their land. Why don't they get off their lazy, reservation living-asses and start working?" (alt.discrimination)
— "As I said the white Europeans had 'firesticks' for CENTURIES before the redskin savages even HEARD about them! The redskin savages didn't even have the incredibly complex machine known as 'the wheel' until CENTURIES after other races had it! They were a VERY backwards people!" (alt.atheism)
— "Those indian savages instead opted for much more equisite forms of torture and methods of creating intense pain in their redskin neighbor victims." (Thread, "Indians Are Sleaze Merchants," alt.fan.rush-limbaugh)
— "I stopped into a New York club and found an American Indian bar-tending. I ordered a Manhattan and the redskin f***er charged me twenty-four dollars!" (3do.bad-attitude)
Unless you've reviewed this voluminous evidence and can rebut it, I'd say it stands as the definitive word on how most Native Americans feel about "Redskins." Without further input, I'll go with the judges who have reviewed the voluminous evidence over a columnist who hasn't.
I could go on, but I trust you see my point. There's no necessary connection between the color red and the Indians' skin color. Your people probably adopted red for a reason other than the one you're suggesting: that they consider themselves "redskins."
Whatever the origins of the color, "red" and "redskin" are two different words today. It's like the difference between "cock" (as in rooster) and "cocksucker." They both contain the word "cock," but the differences and the context make one an insult.
Sticking it to the man
I don't get offended, in general. I'm not criticizing Redskin magazine because it hurt my feelings. I'm passing on what I've learned about Native feelings toward the word "redskin." It offends many of them and I'm reporting that.
Below: A Mohawk Indian? Or another devilish "redskin"?