Here's the key passage:
The team name in this case is the Wyandotte Roosevelt High School Marching Chiefs. It's not the Wyandotte Chiefs and it's definitely not the Wyandottes.
The only time a tribe gets a say in the use of its name is when a school actually uses its name. You know, the University of North Dakota's Fighting Sioux. The University of Illinois's Fighting Illini. Florida State University's Seminoles. The University of Utah's Utes. Et al.
No one has given you veto power over the use of the word "Chiefs." Even when it's associated with a school named "Wyandotte." Again, Chiefs are the mascot in this case, not Wyandottes.
Moreover, you left the Wyandotte area almost 200 years ago. I don't know for sure, but I'm betting one or more tribes have claimed this area as home in the intervening years. If so, they have as much right to judge the appropriateness of the Chief logo as you do.
But suppose the marching band was named the Wyandottes. What then?
First, as you noted, there's a Wyandotte tribe in Quebec. Right off the bat, that cuts your moral authority in half.
Second, the proper way to decide the issue is to put it to a vote of the whole tribe. Or at least the tribal council. The day when chiefs were autocrats who got to tell their people what to think and do is over, if it ever existed.
Every Indian has a stake in being depicted as a stereotypical scowling chief. You can claim the name "Wyandotte," perhaps, but you don't get to claim a generic chief logo.
When the marching band uses an actual Wyandotte chief as their logo, you can claim that too. Until then, no.
The gaming factor
Let's note one factor that no one's mentioned. The Wyandotte Nation has a controversial casino in Kansas City, Kansas. Here's the scoop on it:
The tribe opened the 7th Street Casino in downtown Kansas City after years of battles with the state and federal government. The first version of the facility was raided by state authorities and the federal government didn't support gaming at the site.
But the federal courts rebuffed the state and the federal government in a slew of decisions. Following a $20 million renovation, the new facility opened to the public a year ago and has been doing well.
No, of course not. Circumstances practically force Bearskin to take a politically palatable position. Which is why it's important to know what the tribal council and membership thinks.
Who loves the Chiefs?
I'm not surprised that the school reversed its decision. We know non-Indians love their pet
I didn't read the online comments, but I can imagine them. No doubt there was a lot of vituperation against Indians. "We're trying to honor you. Don't you have anything better to do? Quit being so sensitive. The only Indians who oppose mascots are a few publicity-seeking activists."
I'd love to learn more about the "some native Americans" who support the Marching Chiefs. The only Indian quoted is Leaford Bearskin. Is he the sum total of "some," or are there others?
In any case, we know some Natives accept positive stereotypes. And many don't because they understand that positive stereotypes are still one-dimensional caricatures. Even if the ratio of supporters to detractors is 50-50, that doesn't make the stereotypes acceptable.