Amid pressure to change the nickname of his team, Washington Redskins star quarterback Robert Griffin III has ignited a digital firestorm from the left by pushing back against the “tyranny of political correctness.”

In a Twitter message, he declared: “In a land of freedom we are held hostage by the tyranny of political correctness.”

The controversy arose as Washington, D.C., Council member David Grosso prepared to introduce a non-binding resolution calling on the city’s beloved team to change its “derogatory, racist name.”

Griffin followed his original tweet a short time later with a definition of tyranny, calling it a “condition imposed by some outside agency or force,” such as “living under the tyranny of the clock” or “political correctness.”

Twitter followers erupted:

  • “Loyalty to local racist named team fading … fading,” wrote Bryan Weaver.
  • Josh Wheeler said: “Tyranny? Do we share a common reality? Get real. RT.”
  • @lalndonmccool wrote, “God you make it so easy to hate you”
  • Said Aaron Nagler: “Oh shut up. RT.”

But Griffin also received considerable support: “As a Seahawks fan, I gained a lot of respect for @RGIII today,” said one in the conversation.

Continuing the provocative Twitter dialogue, Griffin added: “If we speak … we say it the wrong way If we do not speak we are cowards.”

He later concluded: “Hate is strong. But love is even stronger. Appreciate the support people. I’m out for the night.”

At Hot Air, blogger Allahpundit said: “I wonder what they’ll do if Hillary gets elected in 2016 and the big-government gravy train keeps on rolling. Frankly, it’s long past time that the ‘Washington Capitals’ became the ‘Washington Socialists.’

“At the very least, the local hoops team should complete its transformation from the Bullets to the Wizards to, at long last, the Background Checks.”

The blogger noted the Washington Post’s online poll showed 55 percent favored keeping “Redskins.”

He wrote that the National Football League team probably will change its own name “on their own terms, when they’re ready.

“Let the left-wing pants-wetting over RGIII’s tweet begin.”

And it did.

At the Twitter news site Twitchy, it was noted, “Can’t let anyone fall out of lock-step!”

Twitter contributor Chemmy wrote, according to Twitchy: “Like, RGIII knows that he’s part of a group that ‘political correctness’ is trying to help, right?”

The site speculated the Redskins star’s comment also might allude to NBA player Jason Collins’  announcement that he is homosexual.

But whatever was behind the comment, many on the left were angered:

  • “Dumb. RT,” said @twpolk.
  • “waaaaaah, I can’t say dumb s—,” wrote @So_Truculent.
  • “oh shutup RT,” @Rodd18 said.

Others, according to Twitchy, were unafraid of “political correctness.”

  • “amen amen AMEN!!!!!! RT,” said Joe Ziggy.
  • “I’m liking @RGIII more every time he speaks. Kid has a mine (sic) of his own. Good for you!” wrote @rusty98um.

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