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Editorials

Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL), April 18, 2002 | Go to article overview

Editorials


Strutting new stuff without politics?

Cheerleaders likely will be scrambling to revise their cheers and a few words to the school fight song may have to be changed as well. But when the new Huntley Red Raiders take the field for the first time next fall, they will be garbed in the traditional red, white and black.

The Huntley School District 158 board is expected to approve the mascot change at its meeting tonight, effectively ending several years of heated debate over offense caused by its former mascot, the Redskins.

Once the name is officially changed, Huntley High will choose a logo to match it, bringing to a welcome halt the long-running battle.

The debate centered on arguments that the name Redskins held a negative connotation, referring only to Indian populations and even a reference to bounties once paid for their deaths. It was deemed offensive by the Illinois Native American Bar Association, a view shared by many American Indian activists and the Daily Herald.

Admittedly, and interestingly, this is not a point of view on which all American Indians agree. Sports Illustrated recently did a survey of the American Indian population and discovered that the majority polled said they either weren't offended or felt the use of symbols honored their culture.

Many of those in Huntley who wanted the Redskins moniker retained made the same argument - honor, not insult, was intended.

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