February 21, 2007

Send out the clowns

Nick Coleman:  Illinois shows North Dakota what is the truly honorable thing

Goodbye, Chief Illiniwek, and good riddance. Next up, the North Dakota Fighting Sioux.Chief Illiniwek gets the ax tonight. The Fighting Sioux nickname should be next.

Sometimes, despite everything, there is progress.

For 80 years, "Chief Illiniwek" has been what fans of the University of Illinois have called the barefoot white boys who have sported buckskin and feathers and aped American Indian dances during football and basketball games. The Chief is a throwback to the days when a conquering culture thought it could spoof racial stereotypes and "honor" people by making them into tumblers and clowns.

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