Though the headline from JSOnline is misleading, the bill that is being worked on is a joke. Senate narrowly OKs bill barring school use of Indian mascots. The article states the bill will "The bill would allow residents to complain to the state schools superintendent if their school district used a race-based team name, nickname, mascot or logo." Lets not get into the silly argument of whether a team named Indians or Chiefs or Warriors is offensive. It is a debate that can go on and on.
Let's look at some unintended consequences. See anyone can file a complaint. The school district will then have to spend time and money to defend themselves from decisions made by people decades ago. Is this a good use of time and money? Of course not.
This anyone thing has be intrigued. See, I attended Madison High School in Milwaukee. Our rival was Vincent High School. The Vincent Vikings to be exact. Is that not a race based name? Let me serve notice now that I find it to be very offensive! Why? Because my forefathers who came from Germany had to live under tyrannical Viking rule centuries ago and I am pretty sure I had a grandfather that could have been killed by a Viking. It haunts me to this day thinking this day thinking a relative of mine from centuries ago was brutally murdered by a violent Viking. Ok so that may not be true. Maybe it is that my high school usually lost in football and basketball to them. But think about it. I am not even a student but I could claim to be offended by the nickname. Now that I read it again, I do not even need to provide a reason why I am offended. So I encourage any student at Madison High School to jump aboard the bandwagon and complain on my behalf.
But what is next? If we are going to go down this silly route of trying to make sure people feelings aren't hurt, to what extreme will we go? Will black people be able to sue white people with the last name of Black? Same thing with white people. Can I be offended if a black person is named White?
What if alumni of say, Menomonee Falls High School, the Indians, get made because MF is forced to change their names but a school like the Auborndale Apaches can keep their name because a tribe has approved it. Could any tribe stick up for MF and say they don't mind or would that not work?
Trying to achieve equality through legislature does not correct the problem. It only makes it worse and more divisive to the communities that are affected.
Now where do I file the papers to complain about Vincent High School?