By Jeff Simpson
"Hey old man, how can you stand to think that way, and did you really think about it before you made the rules" Bruce Hornsby
Yesterday, the Wisconsin State Senate passed the Steve nASS racist mascot preservation bill, which allows white people to continue making fun of American Indian heritage no matter how stupid, racist and imbecilic it is.
Rep. Stephen nASS, R-Whitewater, who represents a portion of Mukwonago, introduced a bill in August that requires a complainant to collect signatures equal to 10 percent of the school district's population to trigger a state review. Complainants would have to prove discrimination at hearing. The Department of Administration, which is controlled by the governor, would make the final call on whether the name must go, rather than DPI, which is run by an elected superintendent. The bill also would invalidate all previous DPI orders forcing schools to drop their nicknames.Senator Bob Jauch said it best:
A sad day in the Senate as the majority party adpted the race-baced mascots bill and created unachieveble barriers to the general public to end the use of Native American mascots and logos in wisconsin. The bill was adopted on a 17-16 vote with Senator Schultz offering a sensible compromise that encouraged collaborative discussions between school districts and the Great Lakes Indian Tribal Council as well as Tribes to address the prejudicial affect that these outdated logos and mascots have to demean Native Americans and their culture. It is a bill adopted by a racially insenstive majority who seem clueless to the need for society to act like the 21 century instead of the early 20th century when Native Americans were punished for speaking their language and assmilation was the code for annihilation of a culture. The legislation dishonors our 11 Native American Tribes. Even more embarrassing is the fact that the bill was scheduled during Native American Heritage Month. What a pathetic way to celebrate the incredible contribution of native American culture and traditions that enrich our lives.As for what the Wisconsin Indian population feels:
Barbara Munson, an Oneida Indian who chairs the Wisconsin Indian Education Association's Indian Mascot and Logo Task Force, said she hoped the governor has more sense than legislators and will reject the bill.
"This clearly is about race. You can tell some people know that and some people don't," Munson said. "There's a lot of white privilege going on."
let's hope that in election season, Scott Walker has enough sense to veto it. I am guessing that he will sign it discretely, some Friday afternoon around 4:58 PM.
PS: For those scoring at home, Kathleen Vinehout voted against this bill and Mary Burke refuses to speak up about it!
In other answers, Burke said she opposed a law passed by Republicans requiring voters to show a photo ID at their polling place and said she was skeptical of an effort to change the state's American Indian mascot law for schools.