Union school board votes unanimously to drop mascot and team name

BY MICHAEL OVERALL
Tulsa World
11/13/2020 10:30 AM
Reprinted with permission
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Community members cheer after the Union School board voted unanimously on Nov. 9 to quit using the Redskins mascot. JOEY JOHNSON/TULSA WORLD
TULSA – Nearly a century after choosing the team name to honor Native American players, Union Public Schools will quit using a well-known mascot that had come to be seen as an insult rather than a tribute.

“Without question, this name is one that has become increasingly divisive,” said Superintendent Kirt Hartzler. “For many, it has been a symbol of pride, honor and tradition. For others, it has caused pain.”

Union first used the Redskins name in 1924 to honor two of the district’s star football players, Clarence Drew and Clarence Haikey, both Muscogee (Creek) Nation citizens, according to the district’s research into the mascot’s history.

The Union school board did not consider a new name or mascot but voted unanimously to stop using the current one, following the recommendation of a 35-member committee that the board appointed in August. The committee included students, alumni, teachers and parents. At least five voting members had tribal heritage.

https://tulsaworld.com/news/local/union-school-board-votes-unanimously-to-drop-mascot-and-team-name/article_eb6f6e62-22b0-11eb-afcd-1bf2e241c193.html#tracking-source=home-top-story-1.

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