Sunday, August 14, 2005

Like we didn't have enough to worry about. . .

Aparently, the NCAA is smarter than the Seminole tribe in Florida. The NCAA has prohibited 18 colleges, including Florida State University and the University of Illinois, from hosting any NCAA championship events because they use "American Indian mascots, nicknames or imagery considered hostile and abusive."

The Seminole Tribe has given FSU their blessing to use the name "Seminoles," but the NCAA seems to think they don't know that they are being insulted.

According to Saint Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Bill McClellan:

. . .the first humans arrived in Illinois about 25,000 years ago. The Blue Book refers to them as Paleo-Indians. In the 17th century, a federation of tribes including the Cahokias, Kaskaskias, Mitchagamies, Peorias and Tamaroas met some French explorers. The confederation called itself the Illiniwek, which translates loosely into group of men, and the French referred to the people and the country as Illinois.

And Illinois it has remained.

So that brings up our first question. If it is politically incorrect to name a team after a Native American federation, is it right to name a state after the federation? Especially when the whole thing is a misunderstanding on the part of the French. None of the tribes were the Illini. Illiniwek was the name of the group of tribes. This is like naming the state Bunch of Tribes. Or, more simply, Bunch. As in, "I grew up in Chicago, Bunch."

As McClellan points out, Illinois named for Native Americans. Similarly, Texas is named after Tejas Indians, a group of allied Caddo tribes in what is now East Texas. Doesn't that mean that any NCAA school that uses Texas and Illinois in their name is using "American Indian mascots, nicknames or imagery considered hostile and abusive" ans should, therefore, be placed on the list?

Once this PC act is done on the college level, it will move on to the big leagues. Once we've purged the nation of this scourge, will PETA demand we stop using animal nicknames? [Well. . . yes, they will. (Near the end of the article.)] Will US Steel demand the Pittsburgh Steelers stop insulting US steel workers? Will the State of Texas demand the Texans and the Cowboys stop using those symbols of hatred (they oppressed the Native Americans, didn't they)? Will we resort to calling the teams the Dallas Guys Who Wear Silver Helmets or the Houston Guys Who Wear Black Helmets or the Tampa Bay Sore Losers or the New York Rude People or the San Francisco People Tempted By Greed or the Green Bay Animal Killers and Boxers or the New England Easily Deceived?

And when will someone stop that Foxworthy guy to stop making fun of rednecks? Doesn't he know that names can hurt as much as sticks and stones?


Blogger John said...

As a person of nordo-european descent . . . I've often wondered why Vikings is okay . . . (with tongue firmly in cheek)

2:37 PM  
Blogger Tod Demuth said...

Well, it just goes to show...some people just don't have enough to do.

Next thing you know, they will simply issue college teams numbers instead of names.

That will probably offend someone, like the 49er's...afterall, we should respect the dead.

2:08 AM  

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