Thursday, January 03, 2008

Blog #3A - Indian Mascots - Right or Wrong?

We've seen them for years - the Cleveland Indians and the Washington Redskins are probably two of the biggest sports franchises that have continued to use Native American mascots. In 2001, the Redskins were urged to change their mascot by a retired school teacher. Team spokesman Carl Swanson responded, “We appreciate people’s concerns about our team name. However, a Native American was the first owner of our team. He gave the team its name. The people of the area and fans of the team understand that Redskins symbolize the greatness and strength of a proud people.”



Some of the logos you also see here belong to the Kansas City Chiefs, the Atlanta Braves and the Florida State Seminoles. I recently mentioned that the NCAA had issued a ban on all Indian mascots unless the university met certain criteria. Florida State was one of the universities allowed to keep their mascots.



Quoted from Tolerance.org on the mascot issue:

Barbara Munson, a member of the Oneida Nation and an activist with the Wisconsin Indian Education Association, explains:

"We experience (the use of Native mascots) as no less than a mockery of our cultures. We see objects sacred to us - such as eagle feathers, face painting and traditional dress - being used not in sacred ceremony, or in any cultural setting, but in another culture's game.

Yes, we are proud of the warriors who fought to protect our cultures from forced removal and systematic genocide and to preserve our lands from the greed of others. We are proud, and we don't want them demeaned by being "honored" in a sports activity on a playing field.

Indian men are not limited to the role of warrior; in many of our
cultures a good man is learned, gentle, patient, wise and deeply spiritual. In present time as in the past, our men are also sons and brothers, husbands, uncles, fathers and grandfathers.
Contemporary Indian men work in a broad spectrum of occupations, wear contemporary clothes, and live and love just as men from other cultural backgrounds do.
The depictions of Indian “braves,” “warriors” and “chiefs” also ignore the roles of women and children. Many Indian Nations are both matrilineal and child-centered.

Indian cultures identify women with the Creator, because of their ability to bear children, and with the Earth, which is Mother to us all.
In most Indian cultures the highest value is given to children — they are closest to the Creator and they embody the future.
"

Go to YouTube and check out the video - "How Hollywood Stereotyped the Native Americans". It's about 5:20 and it shows the way movies and TV programs portrayed Indians. It's extremely thought-provoking. Hopefully this
url works:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_hJFi7SRH7Q

So, what's your opinion? Should high school, college or even professional teams be allowed to have Indian mascots? Why or why not? 150 words minimum.

Issues to think about:

1. What if situations were reversed and other ethnic groups were used instead? Would that be acceptable?

2. Do you force a professional team to change their mascot? How?

Sources:

1. You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_hJFi7SRH7Q

2. Tolerance.org - http://www.tolerance.org/news/article_tol.jsp?id=168

3. In Whose Honor? A Documentary Film - http://www.inwhosehonor.com/

4.

44 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think the idea of having Native amercians as a mascot or anything in pitcualar is very disrespectful. I wouldnt want a team after my skin color called the "Detroit whiteys"(not real), I and others would surely feel disgraced on this so called team, or for just the laugh. Also how long have these teams been around for? The baseball team Cleveland Indians made in 1936, more then 70 years the native americans have to live with this embarrasment. I know some NA dont mind but others may feel sick inside. I have no idea how they fell and I surely would never want to.
Lenny 1A u.s history

Anonymous said...

I believe that professional, college, and high school athletic programs should be banned from having Indian mascots for a verity of reasons. From the sources provided I was able to find a general pattern that Native Americans are offended by these names for two reasons. The first is that all Native Americans were not just warriors, lots of them had other jobs, and also Native American women and children were just as important as the men. The other reason is while the Native American people are proud of their own history, only part of that dealing with these warriors. Native American’s want us to realize that we were the people who forced them to become warriors as we were forcing them of their territory. Native Americans are more than just warriors. It is hard for some people to see how disrespectful this is, seeing it is not their culture or ethnicity, but if the situation was reversed everybody would realize how disrespectful us naming our teams after them is to the Native Americans. I believe that you should force a professional team to change their name. Many teams with Indian mascots are saying the group the name belongs to is okay with that, but the truth is it can still be offensive to other Native American groups. For instance, hypothetically, if the Chippewa’s did not have a problem with the Central Michigan Chippewa’s, when people see there mascot they still see an Indian and get a general impression, an impression most Native Americans are offended by. The only way to ban these names is for the leagues to demand the banning, with no exceptions.

Jacob T.
4th hour

Anonymous said...

I think that using the indians as ideas for team mascots is wrong. Who asked them if they wanted that? From what I saw in the you tube movie, they obviously didn't. Would it be okay to call a team the "Rednecks"? No way! So why use the indian people for your fun and games? When you use somebody's culture in such a way, you are treating them like they don't exist, as if they never mattered and they never will. When children these days think of indians, they still think of them in that they are savages and that they are warriors. Even I used to think that there were no more indians at all because I never saw one walking around with feathers on their heads hooting and yelling. When I watched the movie just now, I'm sorry to say that I was surprised to hear them speak perfect english. So many people think nothing of using indian culture, so what ever happened to equality? Didn't we already go through this with african americans? Just think, what would happen if we used white men stereotypes for our team mascots?

Clare Andrew
Hour #4

Anonymous said...

I dont think that teams should be allowed to use another tribes name. It is very disrespectful to them even though some may see it as an honor is still isnt right to them unless they say its ok. I myself wouldn't care if my name was used in a teams name. I would find it cool that my name was used in a team that most people watch. Others may not think that way but thats what I think. I dont think you can force a professional team to change their name. If people are used to the name already they may get upset if it gets changed. Also if a member from that tribe decided that name it would be disrespectful to his decision. If Native American tribes really didn't like haveing their tribe name in a professional teams name they should talk to the team leader to see if a compromise can be made.

Nick Theisen
Hour #2

Anonymous said...

I think that the issue of high schools, colleges, or even professional team having Indian mascots is a very “iffy” issue. Some of the team names do seem like an obvious stereotype of the Native Americans like the Red Skins or the Warriors. Many people side with the prospect that these mascots and names are wrong and the teams should have to change their names because it is offensive and demeaning of the Native Americans.
The other view of keeping the Native American mascots doesn’t really have too great of a defense. Most of these mascots are demeaning of Native Americans, but some of the teams that have Native American mascots do because of tradition. The Washington Redskins was the name given to the team by their first owner who was Native American. The current owner and others involved with the team are trying to keep the team name because they believe that it is preserving the tradition.
I would have to say, however that I do not agree with sports team having Indian mascots because most are disrespectful to the Indian population as a whole.
Chris Andersen
4th hour

Anonymous said...

I think it’s disrespectful and wrong to use Indian mascots for any team. It’s stereotypical and racist. If it was turned and we had a Detroit team called the “Detroit murderers” we wouldn’t be so happy. The statement from Barbara Munson opened my eyes to the fact that these were stereotypes. The Indians were not just warriors and chiefs. They were fathers and mothers and not many tribes were warriors! Many were farmers and peaceful hunters. And although the teams think they are honoring the Native Americans they aren’t! We haven’t over time, Hollywood made the Native Americans seem cruel and inhumane. The pro and college teams have to realize that even though their intentions might be okay, the people you are “honoring” DON’T WANT IT. That should be a clue to reality, but we still have the Cleveland Indians and the Washington Redskins. I think that the teams should be required to change their name during an off season, and that they wouldn’t be allowed to play unless it was agreed upon, and not disrespectful to anyone. It’s the least we can do, for centuries of stereotypes and dishonor.
Kelsey Kaline 4th hr.

Anonymous said...

The question is: Should high school, college or even professional teams be allowed to have Indian mascots? While I fervently say no, there is more to the equation. When you think about American history, there is always this feeling of supremacy; a feeling that god has given us the right to overcome all. Take manifest destiny for example: our ancestors came up with the idea that it was their destiny, their life’s goal, to conquer all of what we know today as the continental U.S. And that we should stop at nothing to complete this goal, no matter now many cultures we would destroy (**THE NATIVE AMERICANS**), no matter how many lives we would take. I mean, seriously, the fact that we still call these people INDIANS shows the ignorance of our society. In no way is there any relationship between someone who lives in India and someone who’s ancestors lived in pre-Columbian America, except for that Columbus accidentally thought he had landed in India when he in fact had landed in America. What I’m trying to get at is that Americans are arrogant. And is that arrogance that is in the way of banishing these mascots.
Now c’mon, seriously: of course it’s not ok for these teams to be allowed to have Native American mascots! These mascots completely demean the NA way of life. We are no better than our ancestors if we allow these atrocities to continue. An obvious way to put it is that if we were in a role reversal, it would plain and simple that these kinds of mascots do not belong in our society. The South Carolina Bigots? Think about it: a team name should not be based on a stereotype of a culture or religion. It’s morally wrong. In order to make a change, we must show this country the other side of the argument to see the error in our ways.

Tyler Friedman
4th Hour

Anonymous said...

I think sports teams should be allowed to use Indian names. Before we consider banning a team mascot we should first look at its intent. These Indian names are not meant to offend Native Americans. The idea that some schools are using the names as an attempt to demoralize Native Americans is absurd. No. The teams are trying to give themselves an image of bravery, courage, and honor just as the Native American warriors possessed. The mascots project Native Americans in a positive way so what is the problem with them? Native Americans aren’t the only ones with teams named after them. The Notre Dame Fighting Irish are named after the original Irish players, but there doesn’t seem to be any controversy over that mascot. The difference is the Irish take pride in a team being named after them and are able to see there is no harm intended. Native Americans should learn to do the same.

Stefan Rush
2nd Hour

Anonymous said...

High school, college and professional teams should not be allowed to have Native American mascots because they are offensive and portray Native Americans as Hollywood did. Hollywood portrayed Native Americans as savages who were out for blood. There were hundreds of movies that portrayed them this way so it became the stereotype for Native Americans. Naming teams after Native Americans is the same way because the teams only show the warrior side of Native Americans, which is similar to the Hollywood Stereotype. By naming teams after the Native Americans we are taking a race of people and making them into a game, which is unacceptable. It is considered unacceptable to name teams after other races so why is it ok to name teams after Native Americans? A professional team can be forced to change their mascot but it requires the support of the whole community, especially the home community to do it. If the home community wants the mascot to be changed they could hold protests at the games expressing their concern or boycott the stadium. Eventually the team will lose money and be forced to change their mascot to stay in the league. However, there aren’t enough people concerned about the mascots of professional teams now.

Robbie L.

Anonymous said...

Yes I do feel that having an Indian mascot for a sports team is wrong. I feel this way because if the mascot was from any other religious or ethnic background then the people of that religion or ethnic group would take offense to that. But i do not think that they should force the sports teams to change there mascot. I dont think that they should make the sports teams change there mascots because the sports teams have been around for a while and the team name is somewhat of a tradition to the people who support that sports team. I also feel that in a way some Indians could consider it an honor to have a sports team want to name there team mascot after their Indian tribe. I know that if i was an Indian I would consider it an honor to have a sports team be named after my indian tribe.

Courtney Pace
4th hour

Anonymous said...

I think that having Native American stereotypes as team mascots is very disrespectful. I’m pretty sure that Native Americans do not approve of this. It is all a matter of perspective. If we were in their shoes, we would not want to be named after stereotypes towards us. It brings down the honor and respect of all Native Americans, because of those mascots for those teams such as the Washinton Redskins or the Cleveland Indians. Even the name alone is undignified, “Washington Redskins” is bad enough. We should stop the stereotypes and stop these mascots, it is hurting the Native American culture. It is true that this should be unacceptable to society and should come to a stop as soon as possible because it is dishonorable to all Native American tribes in many ways. It may seem hard to change these mascots, but it will be worth it and it does need to change now.

Trevor Nielsen
1st Hour

Anonymous said...

I believe teams should not be able to use Indian mascots as their team name. It is very disrespectful to the people that were in this country before us. What if the Detroit Lions were called the Detroit Blacks or the New York Yankees were the New York Jews, people would not be very happy about that. Why is it fair that Native Americans can be made fun of but not us? It turns the table and shows you what it would be like to be made fun of with team names and mascots. If teams already have mascots that are Indian names or mascots then they should have to change them because it is disrespectful to Indians. Most of the Indian Mascot we have today makes people think that they were evil warriors and most of them weren’t.

Tyler Howe 4th

Anonymous said...

I don’t think high school, college or even professional teams should have been allowed to have Indian mascots. I don’t think it is right to basically have a group of human beings being mocked as a mascot. Native Americans are part of society just like every other human being and the fact that they are the only ones that have been made into a mascot is ridiculous. No other stereotypes of other ethnic groups have been made mascots. Then why is it “okay” to have a Native American stereotype as a mascot? It doesn’t make sense to me. Although I don’t think it is right in the first place to have a stereotype of a Native American as a mascot I think the professional and college teams should be allowed to have them as their mascot. I feel like from an economic standpoint millions of things with the team name and mascot like Washington Redskins and Florida State Seminoles have been sold such as hats, t-shirts, shorts, etc. that as a brand name changing the mascot now would seem dumb. I still think there are things to be done to try and at least diminish these stereotypes of Native Americans.

David Rogers
2nd Hour

Anonymous said...

Compared to a majority of the class I know my opinion would be opposite of others. I don’t see the problem with high school, college, or professional teams having Indian mascots. Though it may show disrespect to the Indian heritage and how they were treated in the early years of United States history, today they are one of the wealthiest people in the nation. If you were to pick any team mascot it would be very easy to think of a good reason why it shouldn’t be used. For example Trojan can sometimes be found inappropriate and if you went back in time to when the Trojans were around, they probably wouldn’t respect being used as a symbol. Brother Rice high school has the warrior as their symbol, its true that not all Indians were warriors but if you watch a old western film it shows that they are. If teams are forced to change their mascots, Hollywood movies should be forced to change their views.

Mollie Yarsike 4th

Alexandra Anderson 2nd Hour said...

In the case of some like the redskins, I understand because the original owner was a Native American. It would have been maybe a disgrace or dishonor to change that name from what the original owner named it. But every other team, I don’t know the reasons for their names and the stories behind them. I can only say that to me it looks like a mockery, especially if that particular team isn’t doing well one season. Native Americans don’t like it; why do we? It’s a mockery of a culture in our own country. I understand that some Native Americans don’t mind, but that’s some…definitely not all, and probably not even a majority. So if we as a people of a country can offend one another and there is no problem with it, what does that say about us? That regardless of what we say, the United States of America is still racist? We treat the culture of the Native Americans as if they don’t exist or even if they do, they don’t mean anything. American history shows that time and time again the Natives have been stripped of what was rightfully theirs and humiliated countless times through movies. What are we trying to do? Have a game of crack on the Natives? It seems that America has a history of humiliating and bringing down any culture that was not white. It’s as if instead of equality, we were saying we are going to find every race we can and make them feel like less than human beings. Native Americans are a great proud people. They are hard workers who protect and value their families and background. Native Americans are more than just warriors and they have something to offer us, but America continues to push them away with the things we do. I am African American and I already become slightly upset when I look back on what happened with racism and blacks only a few short years ago. To think that on top of that, my culture and where I come from was tacked into the name of a team that plays a sport that I don’t even watch? I know that I would be highly upset. People like to pretend that racism happened a long time ago and doesn’t affect the now. That way of thinking is wrong. And if we look at the situation through the eyes of a Native, their entire being as a people has been stripped away from them , along with when they are addressed, it’s with an uneducated derogatory comment that offends them, such as squaw, or calling that person chief. Chiefs are an important part of their culture why taint that? It’s like someone not of my ethnicity walking up to me and addressing me “Wassup mah nigga?” Or someone walking up to a Caucasian and calling “Hey cracker!” It’s just one of those things you shouldn’t do because it’s disrespectful. So don’t the Native Americans deserve that same respect?
~Alexandra Anderson
~4th Hour

Anonymous said...

I do not think that college, and high school athletic programs should change their team names or mascot. I feel like back then they made names like redskins to definitely offend the Native Americans. But now I feel like it’s just a name. There’s really no meaning behind it now of days. I feel like the only reason it’s a big issue is because the Native Americans are teaching their young ones their history and how the Euro Americans treated them. Even if they had a baseball team named “Detroit Blacks” I really wouldn’t take it to heart, knowing that it’s just a name. What happened to the Native Americans back then was very wrong of the Euro Americans. But if you think about it the Native Americans are getting so much out of it. They’re getting full free rides to college, they own most if not all of the casinos. They’re doing pretty well. So I feel like college, and high school athletic programs should not change their mascots or team names.

Bianca Kea
4th hr.

Anonymous said...

I believe that high school, college, and professional teams should'nt be able to use Indian tribes or symbols as their team mascots. It is extremely disrespectful to the Native Americans and their use of culture. The Native Americans seem to be upset because in most movies made in Hollywood or the team mascots sports teams use they are shown to be agressive and savages. I think that the Indians don't like it also because they are always shown as warriors not good men who are fathers and brothers. If these mascots were made for another race, like whites or blacks the world would have a completely different reaction. The teams mascot would be changed immedeatly after someone had a problem with it. I personally think that the Redskins and Indians should change their mascots to not a racical based mascot.

Anonymous said...

I think that high school, college, or even professional athletic teams that have Indian mascots is wrong and disrespectful. It degrades the Native Americans and their culture. It presents the Native Americans as a cartoon, and not as real people with hundreds of years with real culture. What if athletic teams around the world used other ethnic groups as their mascots or team names instead? That would turn the tables around and show the lack of respect for those ethnic groups as well. Then everybody would realize how disrespectful us naming our teams after them is to the Native Americans. I believe part of the problem is that some people don’t realize that this does disregard the Native Americans and their culture. Something must be done; although some Native Americans don’t mind that our teams are named after them, it does matter to most. I know that I would feel insulted if there was a team named after my ethnicity. I would feel that they were making fun of or mocking my culture.

Anonymous said...

There are many sports teams that have Indians as their mascot such as the Cleveland Indians, Washington Redskins, and Chicago Black Hawks. The use of the Indians as sport’s mascots is controversial to many people. The sports teams are portraying the Indians in a stereotypical way. For example, the name Washington Redskins, imply that all Native Americans have red skin and they are being classified by color. The Cleveland Indians mascot is also colored red to portray Indians. The Native American people could easily be offended by these mascots. If you think about it, other races would not want their race to be portrayed in a stereotypical way. It would not be right to have a team named the Blacks, Jews, or the Mexicans. I do not think it is right to use the Native Americans as mascots for sports mascots. These mascots in a way are stereotypical and can be offensive to Native Americans.
By Jacob Rubin

Anonymous said...

I do not think that professional, college, or any other sports teams should be able to use Native American mascots or logos, without first talking to the Native American tribes about the issue. I don’t think teams should be able to use the Native American symbols because it is both making fun of and stereotyping Native Americans. When sports teams are using Native American mascots and using names like The Red Skins or Warriors, it stereotypes all Native Americans as savage and violent people.
I think that sports franchises need to do more to make sure that teams do not use Native American, or any other cultures symbols as their mascots. Franchises should not allow teams to use Native American mascots, and I agree with the steps that the NCAA has taken to stop sports teams from using these mascots. Lastly I do not believe that the public would be pleased if the teams were to make fun of other larger cultures, like African Americans or Caucasians. Overall I do not think that any culture should be made fun of by having its important symbols used as a sport teams mascot.
Todd S. 4th Hour US History

Daniel Mooney said...

Professional, college, and high school Sports teams with Native American Mascots should not be allowed to have Indian mascots. The general opinions of Native Americans are that they do not approve of stereotyping their cultures at all. Using names such as the redskins is very offensive. If the situations were reversed and the Native Americans were stereotyping Americans with offensive names then I do not think that anyone would allow Native Americans to do that. By using stereotypes we are breaking one of the golden rules which is Do onto others as you would wish them do onto you. Although it would be a very difficult task to change Professional sports teams’ Mascots and names due to the immense cost, it is something that must be done. The Native Americans have suffered so much because of Americans and others. The least that we could do is heed to they’re will and ban college and professional teams from using Native American mascots.
Daniel Mooney,
2nd hour

Anonymous said...

I think high school, college, and professional sports teams should be banned from using Native American mascots. From seeing the video on how Hollywood stereotyped Native Americans and reading the given quotes and sources, it is clear Native Americans have already been stereotyped enough. Though most know it is not this way anymore, I’m sure many still get the image of a warrior with a bow in hand and feathers on his head when they hear the word Indian, though they know it’s not true. Using images of a Native American with feathers as a mascot for a team that might not even be related or connected to any Natives just encourages the stereotype, and though some teams were started by Natives themselves, many have no connection. Some Natives may live on reservations and live the traditional culture, but there are so many who live out in towns and cities, who hold all different types of strong jobs, raise their kids, and live their lives like any other person. Not having any Native background, I can see why some people may think it’s not that big of a deal for a team to have an Indian mascot, because it doesn’t personally affect them, but the leagues have to remember that this a group of people, just like any other that lives in our country, and they are easily offended just like anyone else. If teams were named after African-Americans, Mexicans, Muslims – any other group of people – it would be considered politically incorrect, and people wouldn’t like it. So why is it correct to continue allowing teams to use Native American mascots? It shouldn’t be.

Christine Aiello
2nd Hour

Anonymous said...

Growing up I'd always heard sports teams such a Braves, Warriors, Red Skins, and never thought anything of it. Now that I'm learning about the Native American culture I can't believe that in modern day America, we allow sports teams to be so disrespectful and mocking of the Native American culture. As Barbara Munson explains, These teams are using sacred Native American objects, and using them for our team names. She also explains how not all Native Americans were warriors, and they're culture wasn't based on fighting or war. Many Indian Nations were centered off of children, because they are closest to the creator, and also felt women were the creators. If we changed the Pistons, to the Detroit Blacks, or the New York Yankees, to the New York Jews, not only would the names be removed at once, but it would cause to huge stir of controversy. I feel it is wrong, racist, and extremely uneducated to have sports teams named after Native American culture, I believe it should be banned at once.


Katie Rothenberg
4th hour

Anonymous said...

I have never really thought of Indian/Native American mascots as an insult to their culture. I think that it can go both ways; being an insult, or an honor. I would think of it as an honor, having these mascots represent the courage and the strength of the Native Americans. But after reading everything, I can see how it might be an insult. You are taking something that is very important and sacred to many people, and using it in a sport. When thinking about using other cultures for mascots, I can also understand the offensive side of this matter. If a team, for example, was called the Detroit Latinos, the second that I heard that, I would think that it was offensive. But I think it would be very hard to get a professional team to change their mascot. When so many fans are so used to hearing the “Kansas City Chiefs”, it would be hard to just change it and expect all the fans to accept it. I think it would take a very large portion of people, more than half the majority, to allow a name change for the mascot of a professional team.I have never really thought of Indian/Native American mascots as an insult to their culture. I think that it can go both ways; being an insult, or an honor. I would think of it as an honor, having these mascots represent the courage and the strength of the Native Americans. But after reading everything, I can see how it might be an insult. You are taking something that is very important and sacred to many people, and using it in a sport. When thinking about using other cultures for mascots, I can also understand the offensive side of this matter. If a team, for example, was called the Detroit Latinos, the second that I heard that, I would think that it was offensive. But I think it would be very hard to get a professional team to change their mascot. When so many fans are so used to hearing the “Kansas City Chiefs”, it would be hard to just change it and expect all the fans to accept it. I think it would take a very large portion of people, more than half the majority, to allow a name change for the mascot of a professional team.I have never really thought of Indian/Native American mascots as an insult to their culture. I think that it can go both ways; being an insult, or an honor. I would think of it as an honor, having these mascots represent the courage and the strength of the Native Americans. But after reading everything, I can see how it might be an insult. You are taking something that is very important and sacred to many people, and using it in a sport. When thinking about using other cultures for mascots, I can also understand the offensive side of this matter. If a team, for example, was called the Detroit Latinos, the second that I heard that, I would think that it was offensive. But I think it would be very hard to get a professional team to change their mascot. When so many fans are so used to hearing the “Kansas City Chiefs”, it would be hard to just change it and expect all the fans to accept it. I think it would take a very large portion of people, more than half the majority, to allow a name change for the mascot of a professional team.
Sidney M.
2nd hour

Anonymous said...

I think that it is and isn’t acceptable for sports teams to use the Indian as there mascot. It can be taken as disrespectful and racist which offends people, but it is just a name and a picture that was created many years ago. It isn’t intended to hurt or offend anyone it is just supposed to represent a team. I think that high schools, colleges, and professional teams shouldn’t have to change there mascots or team names because it has to do with Indians. It was the stereotype long ago and times have changed but it is difficult to change the name of something that is so well known. I feel that if the situation was reversed in today’s time it would be considered unacceptable, but if it was a name created a long time ago then I don’t think it would be changed, especially if it was a highly respected professional team. I don’t think you can force a professional sports team to change it’s mascot, it would cause a lot of controversy amongst the people who follow that team and who cheer for that team.
Emily P. 2nd hour

Anonymous said...

I think that Indian mascots shouldn’t be allowed. It is disrespectful to use a race of people to represent a team or anything. Especially since the team doesn’t have anything to do with the Native Americans. I could see maybe if the team was made up of Indians or something, but its not. They used Indian mascots for show, and its demeaning to Native Americans, in a way. I sure wouldn’t want a team named after my race, I would be embarrassed, and I’m sure the Native Americans feel embarrassed. They didn’t really do anything to deserve to be named after a team either, but that’s just my opinion. Native Americans need to be respected just like the rest of us. The way that the teams represent Native Americans, is the way that were represented in Hollywood movies. Seen as the bad guys who wear a lot of face and body paint and feather who just want to hurt the Americans. The isn’t fully true, and I’m sure that teams used them as a mascot because they thought it would make them seem more tough, and threatening.

from jourdan garlinghouse, 2nd hr

Anonymous said...

I think that different sports teams with Indian names should be allowed on some terms, but not on others. Certain Indian tribes feel offended about the names of College sports team’s names. A certain example of this is Eastern Michigan. They were previously known as the Eastern Michigan Huron’s. This particular tribe was offended by the name, so Eastern Michigan changed there schools mascot to the Eagles. I believe that they took this decision well. If certain Indian tribes feel offended by a name, then I think they should change the name. The situation becomes more complex though when it comes to professional sports teams like the Cleveland Indians, who have had the same name for many years. I think that if a majority of Indian reservations or tribes across the United States said that they took the name as offensive, that they should change the name of the team. I think that many people who weren’t Indians or come from Indian backgrounds would be upset about this, but I think that they should put themselves in the Indians place. There would be a lot of controversy, and law suits if there was a new sports team called the Nebraska Negroes or the Philadelphia Phat Farm. Overall I think that it should be left up to the United States Indian tribes and reservations to make the decision.
Katie B. 4th Hour

Anonymous said...

Should high school, college or even professional teams be allowed to have Indian mascots? Why or why not?

I think high school, college, and professional teams should reconsider what they are named. If the schools are willing to go the extra mile and do their research about the tribe they want to use, they’re halfway there. After that, if they are as dedicated to their team as they would like everyone to believe, than the next step should be to find part of that tribe, and a leader, in order to communicate and find out if those people would find the name offensive. Some names don’t even make sense towards the Native American culture. Any of the teams that use “Warrior” don’t know anything about the Native Americans but the stereotypes they’ve heard from previous generations. While, yes, it’s true that some Native Americans were warriors, most of them were fathers, uncles, farmers, all around gentle human beings. These people are just as proud as we are today. What if we had a team called the Detroit Assassins? Or the Detroit Blacks? Or the Chicago Muslims or Chicago Jews? Or what if the Falcons were called the Groves Groundhogs, or something like that? Some people might find it cool, but most would probably find it offensive. If a team wants to use a Native American symbol or tribe as its name, the top people should at least talk to a chief or other leader. In the world of offensive team names, much of it could be avoided. Communication is key.

~Jessica Morrison~

Anonymous said...

Considering most mascots are animals, it’s strange to have humans for mascots. Being a mascot does not seem to be an honor. It seems somewhat stereotypical how Native Americans are portrayed as mascots. Some mascots seem to be more respectful than others, but the cartoony caricatures like mascots are very disrespectful. Some of the mascots seem like they’re making fun of Native Americans. The Cleveland Indians have a very disrespectful mascot. It’s a caricature of a Native American, and it seems very stereotypical. Others like the Washington Redskins seem more respectful. It’s strange that Native Americans are being used for mascots because there has been a lot of conflict with whites and Native Americans. Native American culture has not been embraced very much, and it’s odd that sports teams choose Native Americans for mascots. Whites did not get along with Native Americans for a very long time. Now they are more respected, although some of these mascots are still very disrespectful and stereotypical.
Merry S. 2nd Hour

Anonymous said...

Considering most mascots are animals, it’s strange to have humans for mascots. Being a mascot does not seem to be an honor. It seems somewhat stereotypical how Native Americans are portrayed as mascots. Some mascots seem to be more respectful than others, but the cartoony caricatures like mascots are very disrespectful. Some of the mascots seem like they’re making fun of Native Americans. The Cleveland Indians have a very disrespectful mascot. It’s a caricature of a Native American, and it seems very stereotypical. Others like the Washington Redskins seem more respectful. It’s strange that Native Americans are being used for mascots because there has been a lot of conflict with whites and Native Americans. Native American culture has not been embraced very much, and it’s odd that sports teams choose Native Americans for mascots. Whites did not get along with Native Americans for a very long time. Now they are more respected, although some of these mascots are still very disrespectful and stereotypical.
Merry S. 2nd Hour

Ben Zakaria said...

Recently, Native American people have found sports mascots that are based on Indians to be a problem. As I was viewing the blogs that were posted by my classmates, I found that only 2 people took my side. I believe that sports teams should be allowed to have Native American mascots. No team that has an Indian mascot was planned to harm anyone. Having an Indian mascot is a way of showing deep respect to them. The mascots who are based off of Native Americans have been around for decades. Why change them now? To me, it doesn’t make sense to be angered by anything like this. In no way does it show Indians in a negative way. If anything, they are shown in a positive way, and for those who do not agree, they are looking too deeply at it. A mascot is a representation of the team, and nothing more. When you were watching a sports team, like the Kansas City Chiefs or the Cleveland Indians, did you ever get a negative feeling towards Native Americans? I have not, because the mascot is not important to me. To some people it may be a problem to fight for, but for most, they admire a team’s name and mascot. I believe that having a Native American mascot is a good thing. Ben Zakaria- 2nd Hour

Anonymous said...

Should high school, college or even professional teams be allowed to have Indian mascots? Why or why not?

I think college, and professional teams should be able to have Indian mascots, but not high school teams. There are plenty of nicknames out there for high schools to choose, so I think they can stay away from Indian mascot names. College and professional teams should be able to have Indian mascot names, as long as they meet certain requirements. In some cases some natives are ok with pro teams using Indian names, like the Cleveland Indians whose nickname was to honor a former Native American player, Louis Sockalexis who played in Cleveland from 1897-99. Most pro teams use Native American mascots to honor, and pay homage to Native American people. The Washington Redskins believe that their team name, symbolizes courage, dignity, and leadership”, and that the “Redskins” symbolize the greatness and strength of a grand people. Also lastly one more reason why college and pro teams should be able to keep their native names, are simply because it just sticks with people around sports, and it would be weird to change it, especially for the fans of the teams. Like the Florida State Seminoles who have great athletic tradition, most notably in Football and baseball, have a tradition before games, where Chief Osceola runs to the 50yard line on his horse, and spikes the flaming spear in the logo which gets the crowd going.

Anonymous said...

Lajuan Montgomery
January 7 2007
2nd hour
MR. Wickershame


Professional colleges and high schools should have any kind of mascot they want there’s no point of not having a mascot has 1 . They should not be punished, I think they should let them (the schools and colleges) . they should just leave them all alone. From what I saw the Americans forced the Native Americans to become solders, warrior’s etc .The Americans pushed the Native Americans to kill and things in that nature. The native Americans are a part of this society . there is no point of not having a Native Americans stereotype as a mascot ,we should just let them be. there’s no sense of changing the famous mascot now keep it the way it was people.

Anonymous said...

Should high school, college or even professional teams be allowed to have Indian mascots? Why or why not?
I believe that high school, college or professional teams should be able to have Native American mascots, but under some condition. These teams should respect these people and use names that are respectful to Native Americans. Names like the Washington Redskins should be banned, or at least changed. The reason why this name, Redskins, is so disrespectful is that it is talking about the color of the Indians skin, when in actuality their skin is not really red. One team that I think their name and mascot is not so bad is the Cleveland Indians. This name isn’t so bad because it does not say anything that is derogatory or disrespectful, or at least does not seem to be disrespectful an any way. I also think that professional teams should be able to keep their names and if their disrespectful to modify, or change their names. College and high school teams on the other hand should not be able to keep their names because it would be unnecessary for teams of that level to be disrespectful. Especially high school teams because it would teach the kids that it just doesn’t matter.
-Brentson Taylor
4th Hr.

Anonymous said...

I think that no college, high school or professional teams should be allow to have Indian mascots because the teams don’t portray the Indians as they really are, same as they did in the 1800s. They are using the Indian mascots as a way to make money and progress and not only are they using for that but also as mockery. I’m not saying that making money or progress is wrong but they are going at it the wrong way. Indians feel disrespected. However, some teams got there mascots from previous owners who were Indians, such as the Red skins. In this situation I consider it acceptable. If Indians were to use Caucasian mascots the Caucasians would feel the same way that the Indians feel now, disrespected, defiled and debased. In this case the teams whose Indian mascot did not come from a previous Indian owner should be forced to change the mascots. This way they will think twice about their next mascot and the Indians wouldn’t feel humiliated in away.

Nikita F Charles, 4th hour

Carleigh Bechtolt said...

I think that College and even High School sports teams should be able to have Indian tribes as their mascots. I think that it would be a compliment to have a sports team as your mascot. It is showing appreciation to the Indians. I would think that having a famous Sports team named after your tribe would be a sign of being important. But the only way that I think that it would be fair to have the sports teams named after you tribe would be if you got your mascot named Okayed by the tribe itself. If you don’t get the named okayed by its tribe then they could take it as an insult or a compliment.
Carleigh Bechtolt

Anonymous said...

I think that schools using Indian names for mascots could be viewed in several different ways. Many people think of it as discrimination. I don’t think they should be used for the sake of sounding like you are making fun of them. It is not good to judge people and it could be taken the wrong way. However, the positive side of it would be that they are proud of the Indians and only supporting them by using their name. They could mean that they are warriors, so they fight for themselves and win against other teams because they are strong. Also, I don’t necessarily agree that they should not be allowed to use them at all but I do think it should only be out of respect and not as a racist joke of some kind. I think in a way it can resemble the Indian strength and it is a remembrance of how determined they were. Using Indian names for mascots is only a good idea when it helps to identify them and make you think of their way of life and how they looked to other people. The negative side of this is ugly and very disrespectful towards Native Americans and is offensive if used for those reasons. Mascots should be reflecting an appropriate opinion on that team and should never be from stereotypes. If they are given to symbolize the Native Americans then we should support that.
Leah Nagel

Anonymous said...

I truely think that high school, college, and professional sports organizations should be allowed to use the logos of NA. The reason for my answer is based mainly on that the fact is the teams with the indian mascots dont mean to offend Native Americans in my oppinion they have the logo to show that their team fights with passion like the Native Americans did. if anything to me Native americans shoudnt be mad about the logos they should feel honored that teams are using NA logos to represent the fighting spirit of the Native Americans.

Divon Shammami, 2nd hour

Megan K - 4th Hr said...

I think that sports teams should not be allowed to use Indians as their mascots because it can be offensive to them. Some of the Indian tribes may be okay with Indian mascots, but others may not be okay with it. Some may find it disgraceful towards their culture. Also, if situations were reversed and other ethnic groups were used, it should not be acceptable because other ethnic group may find it upsetting. To force a professional team to change their mascot, you would probably have to have people sign a petition to why they should change the teams’ mascot.

Drew R. said...

I think college, and professional teams should be able to have Indian mascots, but not high school teams. There are plenty of nicknames out there for high schools to choose, so I think they can stay away from Indian mascot names. College and professional teams should be able to have Indian mascot names, as long as they meet certain requirements. In some cases some natives are ok with pro teams using Indian names, like the Cleveland Indians whose nickname was to honor a former Native American player, Louis Sockalexis who played in Cleveland from 1897-99. Most pro teams use Native American mascots to honor, and pay homage to Native American people. The Washington Redskins believe that their team name, symbolizes courage, dignity, and leadership”, and that the “Redskins” symbolize the greatness and strength of a grand people. Also lastly one more reason why college and pro teams should be able to keep their native names, are simply because it just sticks with people around sports, and it would be weird to change it, especially for the fans of the teams. Like the Florida State Seminoles who have great athletic tradition, most notably in Football and baseball, have a tradition before games, where Chief Osceola runs to the 50yard line on his horse, and spikes the flaming spear in the logo which gets the crowd going.
Drew R.

Anonymous said...

I believe that high schools, colleges, or even professional teams should not be able to use or have Indian mascot. The reason for this decision is because many teams just have them to have them. They don’t even know what is behind the name. I could see if they respected or acknowledged the meaning or significance of the name. For example the Cleveland Indians or the Washington Redskins, there are so many events or issues behind the gist of those very touchy names. Also think of how the Indians in these schools or who would like to be fans of professional teams but won’t allow themselves because of the respect they have for their heritage. These people have to limit what they want to do, and everybody knows that is not fun. So this is the reason why I believe the branding of Indian team names should be banned, for the sake of the people of that heritage.

JASMINE SMITH
4TH HOUR

Hilary S. - 4th said...

I think that high school, college, or even professional athletic teams that have Indian mascots is wrong and disrespectful. It degrades the Native Americans and their culture. It presents the Native Americans as a cartoon, and not as real people with hundreds of years with real culture. What if athletic teams around the world used other ethnic groups as their mascots or team names instead? That would turn the tables around and show the lack of respect for those ethnic groups as well. Then everybody would realize how disrespectful us naming our teams after them is to the Native Americans. I believe part of the problem is that some people don’t realize that this does disregard the Native Americans and their culture. Something must be done; although some Native Americans don’t mind that our teams are named after them, it does matter to most. I know that I would feel insulted if there was a team named after my ethnicity. I would feel that they were making fun of or mocking my culture.

Anonymous said...

I have mixed feelings about whether or not professional, college or high school teams should be allowed to use Native Americans as their mascots. I think it’s unacceptable when they depict the Native Americans as being savage and goofy, because that directly correlates to people who are ill-informed into assuming that’s how all Native Americans if any are. Another thing to think about is that all the other mascots are, you notice most mascots, with the few exceptions, are animals, so does this mean we are degrading the Native American race to the standards of an animal? If the tables were to be turned and there was a team called the Texas Mexicans there would be a tremendous amount of controversy involved and it would be deemed completely out of line. It’s also wrong when you think about how the Native Americans were treated and are still being treated in regards to land and power in the government. Our country has all ready caused so much mental and physical pain to the Native Americans that cannot be taken back or made up for. Part of me also doesn’t think it’s all that disrespectful in some cases. I think it depends on how the sports team is portraying the Native Americans. The only other teams mascots I can think of offhand that aren’t animals are the Spartans and the Cowboys. The Spartans are a mascot because they choose to represent strength and determination, so if the Native American mascots are mascots for the same reason is it really all that bad?

Annie P said...

I have mixed feelings about whether or not professional, college or high school teams should be allowed to use Native Americans as their mascots. I think it’s unacceptable when they depict the Native Americans as being savage and goofy, because that directly correlates to people who are ill-informed into assuming that’s how all Native Americans if any are. Another thing to think about is that all the other mascots are, you notice most mascots, with the few exceptions, are animals, so does this mean we are degrading the Native American race to the standards of an animal? If the tables were to be turned and there was a team called the Texas Mexicans there would be a tremendous amount of controversy involved and it would be deemed completely out of line. It’s also wrong when you think about how the Native Americans were treated and are still being treated in regards to land and power in the government. Our country has all ready caused so much mental and physical pain to the Native Americans that cannot be taken back or made up for. Part of me also doesn’t think it’s all that disrespectful in some cases. I think it depends on how the sports team is portraying the Native Americans. The only other teams mascots I can think of offhand that aren’t animals are the Spartans and the Cowboys. The Spartans are a mascot because they choose to represent strength and determination, so if the Native American mascots are mascots for the same reason is it really all that bad?