In August 2005, the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) ruled that the usage of mascots, logos, or nicknames deemed racially or ethnically offensive to a particular group or race would be prohibited in all postseason college athletics. According to David M. Gipp, president of United Tribes Technical College, the NCAA’s decision is justified, as Native Americans have been subject to racism for years, and the inclusion of Indian mascots only further contributes to the discrimination. Gipp responds,
Racism does not originate in a sports team nickname, but it certainly provides a good excuse for continuing racial stereotypes that demean American Indians, who are very much alive and present in their homelands across the United States. Removing the nickname removes one more excuse for being racist. (Rowe 3)
Gipp believes that indisputable evidence supports his claim, but the debate between many has arose on whether this censorship by the NCAA is actually just and ethically correct. Both proponents for and against this decision disagree on whether material offensive to some should result in the end of a school’s tradition. However, most arguments are flawed, as they appear one-sided and lack conclusive evidence to separate themselves from mere complaints. Therefore, if both sides present their cases in flawed arguments, where should the line be drawn towards the censorship of college mascots? Is political correctness a necessity? Supporters of the NCAA’s decision cite that the majority of the opposition cannot relate to the Native’s complaints because they themselves are not Native Americans, and therefore have no reason to view the idea of an Indian mascot as offensive. Cindy Lamar, an advocate for the revocation of the mascots, believes that the problem is these identities create “stereotypes which [harm] our children” (Indian Country 2). Through this idea, these supporters attempt to create a division between sides,... [continues]
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