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Letters to the Editor

Criticism of mascots smacks of 'political correctness'

Your March 14 lead story 'Banks Braves mascot could face extinction' sent shivers of déjà vu all over me.

In the mid-'70s, the 'politically correct' malcontents, who, with magnifying glasses, found insults everywhere, convinced the Scottsdale, Arizona Jr. College School District that their previously proud Indian mascot was demeaning.

The team then became known as the Scottsdale Artichokes. I am sure that new name inspired great team spirit.

If the team names were 'Drunken Redskin' or 'Scalpers' I could well understand the demeaning insult, but 'Warriors, Braves, or Chiefs' are complimentary titles of distinction.

It would be idiotic if tightened school budgets were used to pay for thousands of dollars to change mascots rather than improvements in curriculum.

If the Oregon Board of Education seriously considers this insane proposed mascot ban, they should be ejected from office along with those who appointed them.

Political correctness has become an epidemical plague resulting in moral confusion and economic destruction that we experience today in education, airport security, law enforcement, and government. No wonder our public schools are in trouble.

Alden W. Turner

Forest Grove

School uses mascot to honor, not demean

Why is the Oregon Board of Education proposing a ban of Native American mascots such as the Banks Braves?

Just because a few high schools use Native American logos as their mascots doesn't mean we need to say that they are depicted as being a racist stereotype.

If anything they are the exact opposite. Most every school in Oregon uses a mascot that either shows strength, fierceness or cunning. Forest Grove's mascot, the Viking, is depicted as a very large, strong man and shows the school is strong.

Taft High School uses a Tiger to show strength, cunning and fierceness.

Schools use Native American mascots because they are a proud race, and are strong and very determined.

My father and his father grew up with the Braves logo and we all don't want it changed. Instead of worrying about something as small as a mascot, the board should instead look into different school conditions.

Banks High School keeps trying and, even though it needs it, cannot pass a school bond to update the school. One look inside the school and you will see many different problems. But the OBE is too busy trying to settle a dispute on such a small part of the big picture. Banks is a proud school district and wants a proud and brave mascot. What is a better choice for that than one of the proudest and bravest mascots you could have - a Brave.

Ask anyone in Banks and you will hear that they are proud to be a Banks Brave. Go Braves!

Sam Herb

Banks High School

Forcing mascot change would be expensive, divisive

I'm a student at Banks High school and heard about the state superintendent proposed that Banks and 12 other schools in Oregon have offensive mascots against Native Americans, such as the Banks Braves or Scappoose Indians.

As a student of Banks, I am creating a petition against this for these reasons:

1. It's a waste of tax dollars and Banks or other schools can't afford such changes.

2. Our mascot is our pride and dignity for our school and could be stripped from us.

3. Any name can be offensive. The Loggers could offend environmentalists.

4. We have two teachers who are full-blood Native Americans and don't think we are discriminating against them.

5. We are actually honoring the Native Americans for their bravery in fighting us and are still brave.

6. If they are going to do this to us then why not to major sports teams or schools in different states?

Coryn Nelson

Banks High School

Contract Publishing

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