As the state of Oregon decides how to handle the proposal to phase out all American Indian-themed school mascots over the next five years, one school district has decided to offer their opinion early.
OPBNews.com reports that while the Oregon Board of Education could vote as soon as next month to do away with American Indian mascots state-wide, the Willamette Valley farm town of Lebanon is considering a resolution today to reject the ban. The School District has gone on record to state they’re simply not sure what the big dela is and are preemptively trying to ban the ban. Their high school’s team name is the Warriors and the image they use is of an American Indian on a horse.
Athletic Director Rob Allen told OPBNews he doesn’t understand what the fuss is about.
“In the 31 years that I’ve been here at Lebanon, I’ve never had anyone come up and say that we’re dishonoring the Native Americans,” Allen told OPBnews. “And I have Native Americans that have played football for me and parents that don’t understand it either.”
Lebanon is one of 15 public school districts in Oregon that use American Indian related terms as nicknames for their sports teams. Thus far, the State Board of Education has heard passionate testimony from many who feel the team names, mascots and logos are offensive to American Indians on many levels.
For more on this story, visit OPBNews.com here.
See what Indian Country Today Media Network’s Suzan Shown Harjo has to say about ending stereotypes in Oregon school sports.
You can visit these links compiled by OPBNews.com below that round out the full breadth of the mascot debate in Oregon: