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Fighting Whities Mascot Causes Stir
Associated Press | Saturday, March 16, 2002 | By NICK WADHAMS

Posted on 03/16/2002 4:07:20 AM PST by JohnHuang2

DENVER (AP) - The idea started among some University of Northern Colorado students as a satirical commentary on a local high school's American Indian mascot.

The students named their intramural basketball team, made up of American Indians, Hispanics and whites, ``The Fighting Whities.'' They printed up jerseys saying ``Every thang's going to be all white,'' with a caricature of a middle-aged white man.

``The Fighting Whities,'' however, have taken on a life of their own.

More than 1,600 e-mails have flooded into the university in Greeley, north of Denver. Some say it's about time that a white person is made a mascot for a sport team. Others complain the idea as perpetuating yet another racial stereotype.

``It's obvious some of the people are taking it the way it's not supposed to be taken,'' said team member Jeff VanIwarden.

Team members have gotten phone calls from around the country and invitations to appear on television. They were mentioned by Jay Leno on the Tonight Show on Tuesday. The American Indian Movement has weighed in supporting the name.

The team chose the name after it couldn't persuade nearby Eaton High School to abandon its nickname, the Fightin' Reds, and the American Indian caricature on the team logo. The students say the logo is offensive.

The school superintendent denies the logo is derogatory and called the group's criticism insulting.

Some e-mails said the mascot image should be even more derogatory than a middle-aged white man with a tie.

``Some people online were saying that the mascot should be ... a fat guy with buckteeth kissing his sister,'' said Tom Crebbs of Oakland, Calif., who heard about the idea and started his own Web site selling spin-off shirts, hats and mugs.

Others, like Michael Gonsalves of New York, disagreed: ``If you are fighting against a perceived injustice, is the proper recourse to go out and do the very same thing?''

With all the publicity, the team plans on printing new T-shirts. VanIwarden said they will have a message condemning racial stereotypes to dissuade people from making light of the shirt.

On the Net:

The University of Northern Colorado: http://www.unco.edu

The American Indian Movement: http://www.aimovement.org


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Quote of the Day by goldstategop
1 posted on 03/16/2002 4:07:20 AM PST by JohnHuang2
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To: JohnHuang2
Others, like Michael Gonsalves of New York, disagreed: ``If you are fighting against a perceived injustice, is the proper recourse to go out and do the very same thing?''

What these wonderful folks have done is point out the truth! There never was any injustice in these mascot names!

No one has ever, before this, selected a mascot to denigrate the mascot! When these folks tried to select a mascot to denigrate it, they found out that the class of people identified with the mascot liked it! This is great real-life sitcom!

2 posted on 03/16/2002 4:17:41 AM PST by SubMareener
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To: SubMareener
``It's obvious some of the people are taking it the way it's not supposed to be taken,'' said team member Jeff VanIwarden.

Obviously. And couldn't the same be said about the very thing they're complaining about? I don't recall who sponsored the poll (Sports Illustrated?) but it was something like 80% of American Indians really didn't care about what a mascot was.

3 posted on 03/16/2002 4:25:32 AM PST by zandtar
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To: JohnHuang2
``It's obvious some of the people are taking it the way it's not supposed to be taken,'' said team member Jeff VanIwarden.

Only someone steeped in the climate of race/gender politics that current schools foster wouldn't have seen this coming. Caucasians are supposed to be as thin-skinned and obsessive as these grievance-nursing groups, and it just stuns this guy that it's a hoot instead.

4 posted on 03/16/2002 4:27:29 AM PST by John Jorsett
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To: JohnHuang2
With all the publicity, the team plans on printing new T-shirts. VanIwarden said they will have a message condemning racial stereotypes to dissuade people from making light of the shirt.

does this mean they are going to print more of the "Classic" Fightin' Whities, or will this be a new and "Politically Corrected" version. Either way, I am sure these racial activists will be happy to take $$ for the shirts.

1500 orders x $20(shirt) = $30,000

5 posted on 03/16/2002 4:29:50 AM PST by rface
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To: JohnHuang2
LOL!

"Demonstrating absurdity by being absurd."


6 posted on 03/16/2002 4:32:13 AM PST by pocat
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To: JohnHuang2
Have you ever noticed this or is it just me: People are getting worked up about smaller and more trivial things every day.

Could you imagine, back in the pioneer days, someone getting upset and ready to take legal action because the name of something offended them?

Davie Crockett would be in big trouble with PETA. Custer would have been off the scale in political INcorrectness. The men defending the Alamo would have had to put down their weapons and look the other way while Santa Anna's men entered the country with their families and applied for welfare.

Political correctness is robbing us of our freedom very gradually so we won't notice it. It's like a block of cheese and they keep shaving off small slices of our freedom until it's all gone...one slice at a time and small enough to escape notice.

The liberals would like us to become a nation of door-mats and let people from other countries, including those who denounce us and openly express hatred toward us walk all over us. No pledge of allegance because it might offend one of them...the list goes on and on.

7 posted on 03/16/2002 4:32:40 AM PST by capt. norm
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To: rface
Solution: Find out what the original shirt looks like and start counterfeiting them. Talk about "backfire!"
8 posted on 03/16/2002 4:32:56 AM PST by zook
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To: JohnHuang2
"...Fightin' Reds.." "The students say the logo is offensive."

These students have been made really paranoid. They sound like losers that don't have anything better to do.

9 posted on 03/16/2002 4:34:47 AM PST by CWRWinger
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To: SubMareener
These indians have learned the lessons of greed too well from the white man.

A single t-shirt is twenty dollars.

I wanted to get one until I saw what was actually printed on the back of the shirt.

"Go Fightin' Whites"

(I thought it would say "whities")

Then the spoiler:

"Fighting the use of Native American stereotypes"

I'll keep my twenty bucks

Info available here

10 posted on 03/16/2002 4:34:55 AM PST by What Is Ain't
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To: JohnHuang2
I've thought this was funny all along. Big deal. As if any white person is offended.

Whitie, cracker, honky BUMP!

11 posted on 03/16/2002 4:35:17 AM PST by SpookBrat
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To: JohnHuang2
``Some people online were saying that the mascot should be ... a fat guy with buckteeth kissing his sister,'' said Tom Crebbs of Oakland, Calif., who heard about the idea and started his own Web site selling spin-off shirts, hats and mugs.

Ah, the refreshing smell of Capitalism.

12 posted on 03/16/2002 4:35:48 AM PST by Wrigley
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To: JohnHuang2
Have you noticed that their website describes their team as composed of "Native Americans and non-Indians"? Shouldn't that be non-Native Americans? Unless they're talking about people who are not from India.
13 posted on 03/16/2002 4:36:35 AM PST by aruanan
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To: JohnHuang2
I wish I had one of those t-shirts to wear while participating the Confederate Battle Flag/Southern Heritage event today.
14 posted on 03/16/2002 4:41:07 AM PST by CWRWinger
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To: republican; Angelique; rboatman; tame; Alamo-Girl; Zappo; backhoe; goseminoles; Balding_Eagle...
Here in Illinois, we have a university that is called (imagine this) the University of Illinois. Team nickname is the Fighting Illini. Every game sees a performance by Chief Illiniwek. His costume and his war paint are completely authentic. This tradition goes back many decades.

I also played college football at Illinois Valley Community College in Oglesby, Illinois (two-year record: 21-3, with two Midwest Bowl championships). The team nickname was the Apaches. You never saw so much war paint, heard so many war cries or saw as many Mohawk haircuts, except perhaps in a John Wayne movie.

Both of these traditions have been pursued with the greatest reverence and respect for Native American traditions. There is nothing the slightest bit denigrating about it. As an American of Swiss heritage, I would be greatly honored if a college named its teams the "Fighting Swiss."

This year, the Apaches play their final games. In the fall, they will be named something else. I know it was just a community college, but we had an outstanding team. We had a junior college All-American both years -- one of them could bench press 450 pounds and the other looked and played like a young Lawrence Taylor -- and we always sent several players as transfers to Division I schools, such as Iowa, Ohio State, Nebraska and Northwestern.

I am bummed out, dudes.

The pressure at the University of Illinois to change its team name has also been intense, but they are standing up to it much better. More power to Chief Illiniwek. May his tribe increase and find many buffalo.

15 posted on 03/16/2002 4:41:27 AM PST by Bryan
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Comment #16 Removed by Moderator

To: JohnHuang2
"With all the publicity, the team plans on printing new T-shirts. VanIwarden said they will have a message condemning racial stereotypes to dissuade people from making light of the shirt."

I like the Fighting Whities T-shirt better.
The PC crowd is just mad that their promotion of racial hatred blew up in their faces for a change.

17 posted on 03/16/2002 4:44:57 AM PST by cake_crumb
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To: CWRWinger
Pinging the Gen Custer fan club....
18 posted on 03/16/2002 4:45:04 AM PST by ken5050
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To: What Is Ain't
"Fighting the use of Native American stereotypes"

Now thats offensive!

19 posted on 03/16/2002 4:55:18 AM PST by Khepera
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To: aruanan
Have you noticed that their website describes their team as composed of "Native Americans and non-Indians"? Shouldn't that be non-Native Americans? Unless they're talking about people who are not from India.

Hell, for that matter, I'm a native Murrican and you prob'ly are too.

I just ain't no aboriginal Murrican.

Now, I do know some African-Murricans. They're whiter than I am, and speak with a sorta British accent, but they was born in Africa, by golly.

20 posted on 03/16/2002 5:03:35 AM PST by Erasmus
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