January 08, 2010

Fullerton high school retains stereotypes

School to retain Indian image, principal says

By Barbara GiasoneContrary to rumors, Fullerton Union High School will not drop its motto, Home of the Indians, says Principal Cathy Gach.

The school's spirit club was asked to help quash speculation the 117-year-old campus would replace its Native American identity--a connection that caused controversy and sparked protests nearly 10 years ago.

Instead, a buffalo "spirit symbol" may be added to the school's mascots.

"It's been a long time since we had Willie Ugh (a student dressed in Indian garb) run around the football field doing his tomahawk chop," said Social Studies teacher David Shanebeck, who graduated in 2002. "This is a big deal to get another (costumed) mascot to lead cheers."
Comment:  Needless to say, the Plains chief displayed below has nothing to with California's Indians. It's a pure stereotype.

Willie Ugh doing his tomahawk chop...love it. Here's a school that can't claim it adopted an Indian mascot to "honor" Indians. How do we know this? Because it accompanied the choice of name with a buffoonish display intended to mock and ridicule Indians. "Willie Ugh's" routine was just like a clown's or a dancing bear's.

For more on the subject, see Carpinteria Warriors Don't Dance and Team Names and Mascots.

Below:  "A reminder of Fullerton Union High School's Indian heritage welcomes visitors from the north parking lot as they enter the school quad." (Barbara Giasone, The Orange County Register)

"A painting of the Fullerton Union High School Indians logo on the west wall of the school quad reminds students of their campus heritage." (Barbara Giasone, The Orange County Register)


Kat said...

This is so idiotic... Can you imagine the same with an African American or Asian mascot?! This seems to be remaining 'accepted' racism.

dmarks said...

Here's a boatload of them from 11 years ago in just one state:


The "Warrior" ones, as pointed out, aren't necessarily Native stereotypes. But there are plenty of "Indians" and "Redmen"

I wonder how many of these remain? The Warrior ones are simplest to change, as the name can be kept if the symbols are "genericized away from Native stereotype imagery.

Peach Pit said...

So why is nobody pissed about the Vikings of fighting Irish? Hey suck it up. I'm proud to be a Fullerton Indian like 100 years of other Fullerton Indians. It's not racist to associate yourself with pride to a culture we see as brave and strong. Irish people don't run around all decked in green and people of Nordic decent don't wear horned hats. These items are symbolism. There isn't a patent on culture.