“To be used as mascots…”

Editorial from the People’s Voice

The following was written in answer to the Greeley Tribunes question; Should Eaton High School change its team mascot because of concerns expressed by American Indians?

To all human beings,

Those who think “Native Americans” should be “thrilled” to be used as mascots, need to to look up the word mascot.

Main Entry: mas·cot
Pronunciation: ‘mas-“kät also -k&t
Function: noun
Etymology: French mascotte, from Provençal
mascoto, from masco witch, from Medieval
Latin masca Date: 1881
:a person, animal, or object adopted by a
group as a symbolic figure especially to bring
them good luck (the team had a mountain lion
as their mascot)

As an American Indian, I am not “thrilled” in any way, shape, or form to be used as simply a “good luck charm”.

Try using your best friend as a mascot, and be sure to tell him/her it is an honor, and do not forget to tell him/her that they should not take the goofy picture that may go along with same, personally. Of course, you need to stick around while your best friend is being harassed, again concerning same, so you can explain to those harassing him/her, what an honor it is to be a (good luck charm) mascot!

Now, try using people of another culture, say African Americans or Arab Americans, as your mascot, and see how long it takes for people of that culture to react! Can you spell riot or or possibly even explosion!?!

Those who continue to support the use human beings of proud cultures as good luck charms, need to ask themselves how they would like to be used as same, not to mention in many cases having a ridiculous drawing representing them personally and/or the people of their culture.

The United States of America was just attacked! Check out the statistics on the number of American Indians that rushed to sign up, to go defend this country. As it has always been, as per population, American Indians are again shown to, not only be among the first to have signed up to put their lives on the line, but also out number folks of other heritages to have done so. Should American Indians have simply signed up to be mascots (good luck charms)!?! How many mascots do you know that can and did create a code that an enemy of this country could not break!?!

Do you really want to honor American Indians? If so, then get rid of the mascots, teach the true history of this country and just how much American Indians helped to shape her! Teach how much the First People of these lands had to and were forced to sacrifice for there to be a United States of America! Support the passage of a bill that designates an entire month to honor American Indians, as was done to honor Black Americans. (At this time an executive order has to be signed every year, or there is no legal American Indian month.) Support the honoring of the many treaties that were made and have yet to be honored.

The mascot issue is not about being politically correct, it is about treating human beings as all human beings want to be treated, with respect, which American Indians have more than earned.

Do’nvdagohvi dohiyi,

Nancy Thomas
(Proud to be an American and Proud to be Cherokee!)