Michael asked me to be more specific about what bothers me about this article, so here goes:
“In February of 1974, the school board allowed not the community, but the students of Tascosa to hold a meeting and vote on changes that would remain today.”
We, and I mean both white and black students, did not choose to change our school mascot, fight song and flag to avoid Federal implications. The NAACP came to Amarillo and stirred up controversy where none had existed. Students boycotted classes and picked fights with people they had nothing against because we were told things were wrong between us. Most of the black students would tell you that they felt pressured to join in the protests and had not been bothered by the symbols prior to the NAACP’s arrival.
“The brand identity and subsequent social values portrayed by this kind of “fight-for-the-cause” character remained in-tact and the “fuck you you’re not welcome here” to the black community that would soon attend the school was not quite so loud.”
Well first of all, busing began in Amarillo in 1973 so there were already black students when the changes occurred. The black students were among those voting for the new symbols. I certainly didn’t know everyone, but not one of my friends felt that the blacks were unwelcome. As far back as 1968, a black student was elected class favorite. I can’t speak for all of the classes, but those of us from the Class of 1976 elected a black student, Lewis Moore, Mr. Crockett (our Jr. High School) in 1973. We later chose another black student, Keith Grays for Mr. Tascosa in 1976. Hardly acts of white students who felt that the black students should not be there.
Other than that, it is your tone which implies that we were raving racists while you were just an innocent student unaware of any implications of the symbols. The implications you find in a harmless cowboy, a fight song borrowed from a university and a flag designed using our school colors and a T for Tascosa that had nothing whatsoever to do with the Tennessee flag are a stretch at best.
I have no problem with discussions about actual racism, but I think you are chasing shadows. The changes that needed to be made were made long ago and the new symbols are in no way racist, except in your mind. As stated previously, they were chosen by the black students too.
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