Native American Position Paper

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The use of Indian culture by non-Indians as mascots, logos, and nicknames has been a constant fight for years. Schools have been using names of tribes with aggressive, stoic histories for their sports teams. But the Native Americans look at that and feel discriminated against, because of the negative stereotype given by that type of label. In a pro perspective, the teams and schools that want to use the names of “Brave, Chief’s, Apache, and Seminoles” chose to label their team after legendary historical warriors, or brave fighting figures. Just like some other schools mascots are Lions, Tigers, and Panthers. It is not meant to be directly dishonorable or to look down on the Native American population. Along with the Mascots, which are made to be more comical and fun for the crowd to have fun at sports events, they are not meant to be real life Indians, Just like a lion mascot jumping around is not like a real lion, and does not resemble any true lion features except the physical look. In a con perspective, the logo’s mascots and nicknames that were established and taken from historical Native American figures important to their culture are being used without any true knowledge of who the people are and are being shown as something they are not. Having an Indian battle cry, dances, or symbolic scalping at a football game every time there is a touchdown does not show respect to the people they took the ideas from and directly mocks their culture and puts them into a cultural stereotype. Cultural stereotypes also lead to children being put down in school and causes discrimination which destroys the right to an equal education. My perspective on this topic is that if a school is going to use a mascot or a logo that reflects a historical Native American figure or any indigenous related topic that they should as permission before declaring it a school “mascot” or a known symbol for a school or team. Also I think if they are going to use a logo or mascot or call related to indigenous people it should be used in a proper and respectful way. The use of historical Native American figures as a football team mascot or logo is definitely a sign of respect and honor towards that individual or tribe. As long as it is used with respect and honor and does not discriminate towards the Native Americans in any way. Schools name their schools after “cool” Native American names and historical figures but in return it offends a population of people in our society and a race of indigenous people who don’t feel respected. Mascots that look like indigenous people are often used as comical cheerleaders for sports events, but it is directly affecting the children and creating a stereotype not allowing Native Americans to have equality in schools.

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Native American Position Paper. (2017, Sep 25). Retrieved February 7, 2023 , from

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