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Colorado Springs

Thousands sign petition to change Cheyenne Mountain High School’s Indian mascot

cmhs indians Cropped

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) - A petition to change the Cheyenne Mountain High School's Indian mascot has gained more than 2,700 signatures since it was created four days ago.

"In light of the current national dialogue surrounding racial injustice, diversity, equity, and inclusion, it is time for Cheyenne Mountain High School to take accountability and reopen a discussion about the removal and replacement of the 'Indian' as its mascot," the petition reads.

"CMHS's 'Indian' mascot is a harmful reminder of the oppression and marginalization of Native Americans that exists today," the petition explains. "It is a dehumanization of culture in an academic setting where students of all backgrounds should feel worthy and safe. We need to unite together to end the racial discrimination scarring our community by removing a symbol that trivializes indigenous people, their personhood, their cultures, and the trauma they’ve endured at the hand of colonialism and white supremacy."

Meanwhile, a petition advocating to keep the mascot started the same day, and now has nearly one thousand signatures.

"Cheyenne Mountain High School has made sure to stop using 'questionable logos or representations' on sports uniforms, students are not allowed to dress up in Indian costumes at games as they did in the past, and beginning my senior year we were not allowed to do the tomahawk chop in school chants," Sammy Kilimann, the petition's creator wrote. "I understand why some people thinks it’s offensive, but the school district has done a lot to make it so we aren’t abusing the Native American Culture. I am, and always will be, an Indian."

KRDO spoke to alumni on both sides.

"It's clear that the entire district can't unite behind a mascot that harms Native American people so much," Hank Sparks said, citing the thousands of signatures.

"I know that everyone's going to have their differing opinions, I just know I as an individual person would want to keep it because I'm honored to be part of the group of people that is positively representing such a dedicated, hardworking, independent leader -- [the Indian]," argued Olivia Uveges.

We also talked to indigenous people who live in the area. They want the mascot to go.

"You're telling everybody that this is what an indigenous person is, and it doesn't allow for any nuance to modern existence, to being like living breathing people from communities that are still working and that are still thriving," said Gregg Deal.

"If you look at native people who live in indigenous communities and are active in their culture -- that's where you actually are finding the vast majority of native people are opposed to this," Monycka Snowbird explained.

The Cheyenne Mountain School District Board told KRDO it's currently focused on implementing COVID-19 precautions to reopen schools. However, it said it plans to reassess the mascot once school returns to session next month.

Education / Local News / News

Julia Donovan

Julia is a reporter for KRDO. Learn more about Julia here.

Comments

16 Comments

  1. Were there Native Americans getting signatures? No? Just more self hating white Liberals speaking for the Natives and telling them what is best for them? Any Native Americans complain about being honored by the school?
    Now they are truly being marginalized…..your not worthy of even being a mascot for a team. That’s what they are saying by doing this. They want you back on the Rez, that’s their dog whistle. Whites “Wiping Out” NA’s AGAIN!

    1. Let the hateful bigots create their own petition while they are on here complaining. You should rename your orange mascot in the White House…I don’t know the Washington Orangutans.

      1. He has a title….it is THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA!
        You will keep saying it for FOUR MORE YEARS!

  2. Thousands of white folk are upset!! White liberals are the biggest bunch of ninny muggins walking on the planet. Bunch of Karens thinking they’re doing the world a favor while ignoring their own racist feelings and thoughts!! Liberalism is a mental disorder and all the liberal cities are proof!

    1. Why would he be 15 points behind Russia?
      It always makes me think what is YOUR perfect US vision? I have only seen hate and violence from your side? Do you intend to keep this up and think NORMAL, RATIONAL THINKING people will want what you envision for the country?
      What exactly is the vison of the left? I think Hitler tried that once….can you fill us in to what American will look like in 5 years?
      Asking for a friend.

    2. Juts like Hillary was a sure win and when she didn’t everyone was crying and throwing themselves on the ground because the media told them there was no way Trump could win.

      If you really think Russia can change our election then you are a fool. If you think that we (the USA) don’t meddle in every other countries elections then you need to open your eyes.

      Blaming it on the Russians was Hillary’s way of not taking responsibility for being and extremely bad candidate. I Don’t like Trump but voted for him anyways because Hillary would of crashed our country and sold more of our assets to Russia under the table like she has done for years.

  3. White liberals are a self hating cuckold bunch. I feel bad for them the next 4 years are going to be hard for them.

  4. Cheyenne Mountain alum here, graduated a long time ago. I may have a unique perspective on this issue. Years ago, about 18 of us students and teachers plus chaperones excitedly boarded the school activity bus for a road trip through the Southwest. We visited Chaco Canyon, Alamogordo, Truchas, Trampas, and other areas of interest, camping along the way. I will never forget the embarrassment I felt as our bus, emblazoned with “Cheyenne Mountain Indians”, pulled in to the Taos Pueblo to the bemused gazes of the real Indians. Even at 16, I cringed because it wasn’t appropriate. Humans should not be mascots. It’s time for a change of name.

  5. Cheyenne Mountain, that’s where all / Majority the Broadmoorites go right? I can see why the wealthy would avidly fight to continue keeping a mascot that does nothing one way or the other to them, but apparently does bother some people, indigenous or not. If you don’t see it or it doesn’t bother you then why does it matter. But if it does bother someone else, well that’s unacceptable. Intolerance is rampant, and some people want to fix it. Now is the time to do so while all of these changes are occurring. Let’s stop disparaging several groups, just so the wealthy can maintain status quo. Sorry, your lives will have to change as well.

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