Editorial: Wisconsin mascot bill something to cheer about
"The state Legislature last week created a fair process for challenging race-based mascots in Wisconsin public schools, giving Native Americans something to cheer about.

The bill passed both chambers of the Legislature in the final days of the session, and Gov. Jim Doyle is expected to sign the legislation.

The bill's impending passage into law offers a teachable moment about race relations. Now would be a good time for schools to talk frankly with students and their parents about why society has allowed sports teams to reinforce stereotypes of Native Americans and why it's time for schools to let them go.

It's puzzling why this issue continues to rub some sports lovers the wrong way. It's almost as if they prefer to elevate a sports culture manufactured in the 20th century above a living and breathing Native American culture that has existed here for thousands of years.

Whenever we write about this topic we hear from readers who disparage studies about the effects of sports mascots on Native Americans. The most often cited research comes from Dr. Stephanie Fryberg of the University of Arizona, who has replicated studies showing that exposure to mascots is damaging to Native American students."

Get the Story:
Editorial: Ethnic groups deserve respect awarded by mascot bill (The Green Bay Press-Gazette 4/27)

Also Today:
Indian mascot bill passes Assembly (The Dunn County News 4/25)
American Indian mascots could be dropped from schools (WEAU-TV 4/23)

Related Stories:
Bill against Indian mascots goes to Wisconsin governor (4/21)
Editorial: Race-based mascots don't belong in Wisconsin (4/16)
Wisconsin Senate approves bill against Indian mascots (4/14)
Editorial: Not all Indian mascots are offensive to tribes (3/4)
Opinion: Offensive mascots hurt learning environment (3/1)
Wisconsin Assembly backs bill against Indian mascots (2/26)
Editorial: Potawatomi leader supports school's mascot (2/25)
GOP lawmaker delays Indian mascot bill in Wisconsin (2/24)