Saturday, May 20, 2006

Illiniwek compromise possible, trustees say

Illiniwek compromise possible, trustees say
The Associated Press
May 17, 2006

URBANA, Ill. -- University of Illinois trustees said Tuesday they still believe they can reach a "consensus solution" with the NCAA that would resolve the debate over the Chief Illiniwek athletic mascot.
"The Board and the University community have been engaged in an effort to reach a consensus solution to the issue of the Chief," trustees Chairman Lawrence C. Eppley said in a statement. "We believe that this is an achievable goal."
The NCAA placed Chief Illiniwek on its list of "hostile and abusive" mascots in August, making Illinois ineligible to host postseason athletic tournaments. The NCAA executive committee rejected Illinois' final appeal of the decision April 28, although it can keep its Illini and Fighting Illini nicknames.
Supporters of the mascot, a student dressed in buckskins and headdress who dances at halftime, say it honors the state's heritage; opponents say it perpetuates a racial stereotype that demeans American Indians.
Illinois received a six-page written statement from the NCAA on Monday explaining its decision to reject the university's appeal.
"Illinois had multiple opportunities to present evidence in support of its position," the letter stated. "However, Illinois simply failed to present sufficient information to the staff review committee or the Executive Committee on which to conclude that the 'Chief Illiniwek tradition' should not be subject to the policy."
On Tuesday the NCAA said it added William & Mary to its list of schools subject to restrictions. The school can keep its "Tribe" nickname.
Copyright © 2006, The Associated Press


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I myself believe that if this symbol is somehow offensive that an effort should be made to change that offense. I fear the next step is to eliminate all team names associated with Indians. If the Illini team name falls then I vote to change the university name and the state name as well. If we cannot find a way to maintain the Indian as part of our history then perhaps the only way to go is to eliminate all references. That would eliminate all offensiveness as well. In the mean time, I will continue to be amused that no one is making inroads to eliminate teams named after the Angels, the Patriots and the Padres.

10:47 AM  
Anonymous mizzouprof said...

I think a lot of the fury surrounding Chief Illiniwek has to do with everyone missing the inescapable reality: this was just about the hands-down cheesiest displays of "college spirit" ever...

The best, most even-handed treatment of the subject I have seen is the essay below:

It really wraps it all up in a nice little bow. But it STILL ignores the fact that the whole thing should have ended long ago, not because of any PC-related hokum, but because it was just soooooooooo bad!


8:45 PM  
Blogger Resilient Hawk said...

I have been watching this situation. I don't know what solution there could be, but I get the feeling that the emotions here are disproportionate to the issue. If every cultural group announced offense, we would lose any cultural affinity at all. Killing the Chief at U of I will only diminish an opportunity to discuss the Illinwek. Instead, it will reduce the American Indians from all tribes into only a footnote status, more famous for gambling than for their positive values. Casinos are becoming the legacy among the masses, not the heritage.

It must be difficult to see the profiting coming from the marketing of Chief Illiniwek, but killing him as a mascot isn't the solution.

Chief Illiniwek is Dying - Killed by His Own People
R Hawk
Diary of a Newspaper Hawk

9:16 PM  

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