Around the Campfire: Racism and Mascots
By Dr. Dean Chavers
Tim met with us once during the fall of 1970. He promised not to conduct a sham religious Indian ceremony where he put a hex on the other team, but he would not stop being the “Stanford Indian.” It was like his whole life was taken up with doing his stupid dances after each Stanford touchdown. More specifically, he dressed up in Plains Indian regalia, with the full headdress, the buckskin shirt and pants, and moccasins. The problem was he was a Yurok Indian from northern California. The Yuroks have never had a tradition of wearing Plains Indian headdresses.
However, he would not agree to give up being the Stanford mascot altogether. It took a vote of the Student Senate, with the administration sitting on its hands and mostly doing nothing, to make the change happen. The vote by the Student Senate was 18 to 4 to drop the Indian mascot. Richard Lyman, the president, did not object.
For more on the subject, see Early Mascot Victories and Team Names and Mascots.