Skip to comments.North Dallas suburb's school board changes nickname from Coons [Racially Offensive]
Posted on 03/05/2002 5:03:33 AM PST by MeekOneGOP
North Dallas suburb's school board changes nickname from Coons
The Associated Press
FRISCO, Texas The Frisco Fighting Coons are no more.
Some students and parents in the North Dallas suburb had complained the nickname was racially offensive, and the Frisco School Board agreed Monday night, voting unanimously to change the nickname from Coons to Raccoons.
Superintendent Rick Reedy recommended the change.
Of several dozen people at Monday night's board meeting, many were vocal in their desire to keep the nickname the same as its been for 78 years. Some wore T-shirts and had signs in their yards reading, "Don't Rac my Coons."
Supporters said they had never learned to use "coon" as a racial slur and were proud of the nickname, created in 1924 when no one attached any racial significance to the name.
But school trustee Jimmy Gaffney said Monday night that it's time for a change.
"My dad thought it was the greatest thing going, and he is a racist, I'll be honest with you. I never taught this to my children. I don't want them to be a part of it. And I think our children today don't want to be a part of it," Gaffney said.
"I don't see any walls built at our school between our children, and I don't want to start that," Gaffney said.
Coon Memorial Stadium already had been changed to FISD Memorial Stadium. Frisco's water tower will have to be repainted, and T-shirts, bumper stickers and other signs will have to be changed to reflect the new nickname.
Students' reactions varied. "No one has ever said anything, ever, that I know of," said Jenny Forwark, who is white.
But black student LaVaughn Oliver, a sophomore, said, "I have a friend whose grandfather was killed by a Klan member, and he had that etched in on his chest, and it bothered him."
Valarie Blackman, another black student, said, "A lot of what's happening, you have new people moving in who have a tendency to take offense to that, as compared to the people who have always been here."
Track coach Steve Anthony, who is white, told Dallas television station WFAA: "If we're the Powder Puffs and we win football games and track meets, I don't care, that's my opinion. But for the kids to be made fun of, I don't think it's the appropriate thing."
Trustee Jane Whitledge said earlier, "I'm hoping that people understand that using the word raccoon in its full spelling is a way to maintain the tradition."
The superintendent late last week recommended the change, adding, "I feel that all decisions we make must come down to what is right for kids. It's important for students to be able to be proud of their school, and that includes its mascot. If one student is made to feel uncomfortable, that is one too many."
(ap.state.online.tx 0800 03/05/2002 01:36:02 )
I have live in the Dallas Metroplex for 30 years now and I had never heard of this school's moniker/name before today. This story was on the radio this morning, 102.9 FM KDMX.
Frisco board alters school's moniker
Our nickname was the Pekin Chinks. [And yes, it got changed years ago.]
The should change their name to the "We Bend Over And Take It Up The Wazoo For Liberals". I'll admit it's not a catchy name, but it's true.
When the Brady Bunch got the Washington Bullets to change to the Washington Wizards, I wonder if they considered the fact that "Wizard" was too close to "Grand Wizard."
I am more pissed about the St. John's Redmen changing to Red Storm. Coon to Racoon isn't that big of a deal.
I distinguish between your garden variety PC decisions, and ones which are just thoughtful, and perhaps even kind.
btw, I'm a Cleveland Indians' fan who is against a name change there because the name was given to the team out of respect for one of its early players, and as a symbol of strength.
Maybe in longitude, but the real opposite point would be in the southern hemisphere.
Many of the people who live in that state call themselves Coon Asses.