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Some Ohio Lawmakers Urge High Schools To Retire Native American Mascots

High school football player during the national anthem.
Senior Airman Naomi Griego
U.S. Air Force photo

Some Democratic state lawmakers have introduced a resolution to urge schools in Ohio that have Native American mascots to retire them. This is not a bill that would require districts to do that but the Democratic lawmakers sponsoring it, who are in the minority in state government, hope the resolution will spark a conversation about it.

The Ohio High School Athletic Association said there are 79 high schools with mascots referred to as Indians, Redmen, Braves, Mohawks, Raiders and other like terms.

Rep Adam Miller (D-Columbus) said it is time for those schools to retire those mascots.

“We are hoping this resolution forces a consideration of an issue that has been quietly brewing for a long, long time," Miller said.

Miller is calling on state and local communities to help schools to make those changes, especially now that one of Ohio's Major League Baseball teams has chosen to do that.

The Cleveland Indians will be known as the Guardians next season, after recently changing their name. In recent years, they had been previously moving away from using their former controversial mascot, Chief Wahoo. But not everyone is on board with the changes. Many fans have lambasted the team's decision on social media.

Copyright 2021 The Statehouse News Bureau. To see more, visit The Statehouse News Bureau.

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment.