Home > IP News
BOSTON (AP) - Massachusetts lawmakers are weighing whether to ban the use of Native American mascots in public schools - a proposal that drew strong opinions at a public hearing Tuesday.
The push comes after the town of Tewksbury rebuffed efforts to change the name of its high school mascot, the Redmen.
Linda Thomas has children in the first and fourth grades in Tewksbury and said she doesn’t want to signal that “it’s OK to use these images and memes and logos.”
“The name has becomes so integrated and repeated that the meaning is lost,” she said. “People using it don’t intend to cause harm, but the impact is harmful and Native Americans have been saying this now for decades.”
Thomas added it’s hard to imagine any other racial group being used as a mascot.
State Rep. James Miceli, a Democrat who represents Tewksbury, said opinion in the town was overwhelmingly against changing the Redmen mascot. He urged fellow lawmakers to reject the bill outright or exempt communities that already have voted, as Tewksbury did at a town meeting.