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Bay Area parents revolt after woke high school proposes dropping Minutemen mascot to make everyone 'feel comfortable'

Image source: YouTube video, KNTV-TV - Screenshot

Having apparently run out of professional sports icons to smash, woke iconoclasts have settled on their next target: a Bay Area high school mascot.

Educators and administrators in the Mount Diablo Unified School District determined that Concord High School's Minutemen mascot needs to go.

The Minuteman mascot figures prominently on the school's website, appearing in its logo, its sporting scoreboards, and in its outgoing communications.

The image summons the memory of the militiamen who were among the first to fight in the American Revolution. They received the moniker "minutemen" on account of the requirement that they be ready for action "at a minute's warning."

Their readiness and the minutes, hours, and years they committed to the cause of securing American independence helped guarantee the success of a nation that would enjoy the luxury of debating whether to pay them a modicum of respect some 250 years later.

Concord High School, founded in the late 1960s, first decided to embrace the image and name to honor the men who formed the Minutemen militia in Concord, Massachusetts, in 1775, reported the Pioneer, a local Concord paper.

However, now the school's principal, Julene MacKinnon, wants to "make sure that we have a mascot that represents everyone," reported KNTV-TV.

MacKinnon, like others in the district, is uncomfortable with the male mascot, particularly when he appears armed. She reckons the image is tied to "some of the brutality, them being a militia."

The Pioneer reported that late in the pandemic, MDUSD superintendent Adam Clark and the governing board began discussing changing mascots at the Concord and Ygnacio Valley high schools. The latter have already followed through with their replacement.

A teacher at Ygnacio Valley took issue with her school's mascot, which at the time was a proud indigenous warrior wearing a headdress. It is now a wolf.

Similarly, the previous principal at Concord High reportedly complained that "Minutemen" referred only to one gender and that the symbol of a rifle was problematic.

In response to these pet grievances, Clark said, "The mascot conversation is long overdue, and it is time to ensure that all students, staff and community members feel comfortable with images at our schools."

Then-board president Cherise Khaund, now a trustee, concurred, citing the 2015 California Racial Mascots Act, which says, "The use of racially derogatory or discriminatory school or athletic team names, mascots, or nicknames in California public schools is antithetical to the California school mission of providing an equal education to all."

In justifying the change, Khaund also cited the district's policy that states, "District programs and activities shall also be free of any racially derogatory or discriminatory school or athletic team names, mascots, or nicknames."

Some parents, alumni, and students in the community, unclear about how precisely an American minuteman could be misconstrued as derogatory or discriminatory, spoke out at a Mount Diablo Unified School board meeting Wednesday, reported KRON.

"I have relatives that were in the Revolutionary War. They would be appalled at the fact that we are losing our heritage," said community member Wes Anderson.

Mark Lloyd, another supporter of the Minutemen mascot, told the board, "You have whole families that identify as Minutemen. You have families who buy a house to continue their legacy there."

Julie Lyster, a Concord High parent, proposed a supposedly inclusive half-measure: "Remove the musket. Add a woman beside the minuteman. There were women minutemen, and African American minutemen."

According to the Daily Mail, this option — of adding a "minutewoman" or changing the mascot's complexion — is being taken seriously.

Concord is 55% white, 30% Hispanic, 13% Asian, and roughly 4% black.

As for students, they appear to be less than enthused about swapping out their patriot mascot for an animal devoid of greater significance.

Students were surveyed earlier this year on a possible replacement. Keeping the minutemen was not an option. Instead, "the bears" and "crocodiles" have been entertained as possibilities.

500 out of 1,100 students reportedly participated. Although "the bears" received the plurality of votes (190), one parent stressed, "I don't think the students are excited about either" option.

Concord High is not the first educational institution in recent memory to drop its mascot to accommodate woke sensibilities.

Here are just a few:

  • Valparaiso University in Indiana replaced its Crusader mascot with a golden retriever;
  • Bountiful High School in Salt Lake City, Utah, replaced its "Braves" native mascot with the "Redhawks";
  • Texas A&M-Corpus Christi kept its mascot's name "Izzy the Islander," but dehumanized it entirely so that rather than paging homage to Pacific Islanders, it now is meant to look like water;
  • George Washington University students voted to replace their mascot, George the Colonial, and may settle on "Blue Fog";
  • North Haven High School in Connecticut opted for "Nighthawks" instead of Indians";
  • The University of Nebraska Lincoln updated its "Herbie Husker" mascot so that it no longer flashes the "OK" hand gesture, which some conspiracy theorists reasoned was a hate symbol; and
  • Long Island University dropped its "Blackbirds" nickname after claims it was somehow racist, embracing instead "Sharks."

Debate Over Concord High School Mascot Continuesyoutu.be

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