US CBS Broadcasters Apologize to Native American Basketball Player After Mocking His Name
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broadcasters Chris Walker and Chick Hernandez have come under fire after making fun of basketball player Isaiah Poor Bear-Chandler during Monday’s (November 21) game betw
“Who got that offensive rebound? I don’t even want to say it. I’ll let you say his name because I want to be sure. Is it ‘Pooh Bear?’ Come on; you got to be kidding me,” Walker said of the Wichita State player.
Hernandez responded, “Isaiah ‘Pooh Bear’ Chandler is 50% Native American from the Oglala Lakota tribe, so he chose to use ‘Pooh Bear’ on his jersey.”
“You know what, I love that. Shoutout to Coach Isaac Brown for allowing it to happen,” Walker replied before continuing to compare the athlete to Winnie the Pooh.
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Here’sannouncers mocking ‘s name on national television. If you get PAID to call games and say people’s names, maybe research in advance to understand it’s a Native American name.
— Ryan W. Gates (@RyanWGates)
Poor Bear-Chandler, pictured above in black, was raised on a reservation in Pine Ridge, South Dakota. He took to Twitter after the game to respond to the commentators’ remarks. “So it’s okay to make fun of my last name?” he tweeted. “Just shows your ability to be serious in a professional setting. Just because my people was almost colonized doesn’t mean I don’t know where I come from!”
So it’s okay to make fun of my last name? Just shows your ability to be serious in a professional setting. Just because my people was almost colonized doesn’t mean I don’t know where I come from!
Was a young girl adopted from Russia capable of murder?
Saying they feared for their safety, an American couple gives up the daughter they welcomed into their family. "48 Hours" contributor Troy Roberts revisits the case that he says haunted him for years and forever changed his life.More than two decades ago, "48 Hours" contributor Troy Roberts reported on the heart-wrenching story of a 9-year-old Russian girl who was adopted by an American couple. They called the little girl Caralee, and their lives together started with promise. But a year-and-a-half later, the couple came to believe Caralee was dangerous, even capable of murder. They say she tried to kill her little brother.
— Isaiah Poor Bear (@Big_I35)
Many fans also felt Poor Bear-Chandler was disrespected, with one Twitter user writing, “If you get PAID to call games and say people’s names, maybe research in advance to understand it’s a Native American name.”
“Such a disgraceful display @CBSSports,” added another fan. “What a missed opportunity to enlighten the audience about the Oglala Sioux and @Big_I35 name. The @CBSSports announcers were lazy and juvenile. They choose to make fun of a name instead of researching the rich history behind it.”
“It’s not okay. The hypocrisy when they read from their script about how it’s Native American Heritage Month (with the camera on you) while they mocked your name and congratulated your coach for ALLOWING you to have your name on your jersey,” wrote another. “It was disgusting and disrespectful.”
Such a disgraceful display. What a missed opportunity to enlighten the audience about the Oglala Sioux and name. The announcers were lazy and juvenile. They choose to make fun of a name instead of researching the rich history behind it.
Was a young girl adopted from Russia capable of murder?
Occurred on October 21, 2022 / Columbus, Ohio, USA: "Kessa, a 10 month old Corgi tries on her new shoes."
— Ted Roberts (@tcroberts17)
It’s not okay. The hypocrisy when they read from their script about how it’s Native American Heritage Month (with the camera on you) while they mocked your name and congratulated your coach for ALLOWING you to have your name on your jersey. It was disgusting and disrespectful.
— Ryan W. Gates (@RyanWGates)
The official Wichita State social media pages later issued a statement admonishing the comments while also noting that Walker and Hernandez had made “apologetic efforts.”
— Go Shockers (@GoShockers)
“Isaiah strongly desires for this unfortunate event to serve as a positive learning opportunity in support of the indigenous community,” the statement read.
According to, Hernandez and Walker met with Poor Bear-Chandler to apologize in person on Tuesday morning. “Chris and I would like to take this time to publicly apologize to Isaiah Poor Bear-Chandler, his family, the Native American community, NABC, the Hall of Fame Classic for our comments and lack of sensitivity surrounding Isaiah’s name during yesterday’s game,” Hernandez said.
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He continued: “We asked for and met with Isaiah this morning to apologize in person and express our deep regret. We appreciate Isaiah taking the time to educate us on the significance of his name and his heritage. We will continue to learn from this and be better moving forward.”
Check out more reaction to the comments below.
Who hires these guys? What a bunch of jokesters.culture
I hope you aren’t paying for these guys to talk…
— CC28 (@ChrisCilip)
His name is Isaiah Poor Bear Chandler. Why can’t your amateur announcers get it right or was it purposely made fun of. . How about an apology?
— Chris Dennis (@J_Chris_Dennis)
Indigenous erasure is so pervasive in this country & I’m f’ing sick of it! Poor Bear is a Lakota last name. It is not hard to pronounce! Isaiah Poor Bear-Chandler is a role model for many Native kids.
Apologize and DO BETTER!
— Dr. Dr. Desi (she/her) (@native4data)
Just a reminder that this isn’t the first time Isaiah Poor Bear-Chandler has faced mocking and insensitivity.
— Richmond Wildcat (@richmondcat5)
Just in case you didn’t know. It’s Poor Bear-Chandler. He’s half Oglala Lacota and was raised on the reservation. He kept his name to honor his heritage. Not for y’all to disrespect him during Native American heritage month.
— Court (@courtneyrphotos)
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