… that school mascot?
Over the years, at different educational institutions, I’ve been a:
- Golden Hawk
- Varsity Blue
But it was a high school class reunion where we had a sports discussion, that I realized that I had another school mascot. For the most part, the reunion was filled with people who had played on a number of sports teams. The topic of discussion was that the school had a new name for the sports team since we were there. They were now the Phoenix.
That wasn’t what we were when we played school sports. We had either red or blue uniforms and we were the Redmen. It wasn’t something that was displayed on our uniforms; I remember them as pretty bland. But, when we got school letters or awards, it had the image on them of the romantic notion of a First Nations people, complete with head dress.
I always thought that it was a strange thing; there were no First Nations peoples all that close to us. The Saugeen Nation was north in Bruce County, the Chippewa Nation was south in Lambton County, and the Oneida Nation was in Middlesex County. Yet, somehow, that was what we had at our secondary school. I don’t know the history of it; you don’t have a choice when you go to school. It’s just there.
The choice of moving to the Phoenix wasn’t a recent one. It was a decision that was made a few years ago. Changing made a great deal of sense, especially now that we are dealing with the whole concept of reconciliation.
Now, a small secondary school in mid-western Ontario isn’t going to change the world but it was the right thing to do. There are more significant changes that could be made and I’ll ask for your opinion below.
So, for a Sunday, your thoughts …
- Does your school use a First Nations’ representation for a mascot?
- Can you name a school that made a change like my old secondary school did?
- How do you feel about the refusal of professional sports teams to replace their logo in 2017 – Cleveland Indians, Washington Redskins, Atlanta Braves, Kansas City Chiefs … ?
- Is it important to retain tradition at the expense of offending others?
Please share your thoughts in the comment below. I’d be very interested in reading them.
You can check out all of the posts in this series here.
Got an idea for a future post? Let me know here.