Letter: A great mascot

This letter is in response to Bryan Warnick’s letter, published on Aug. 27. Bryan said a university’s mascot should be humorous and dance around with a big foam costume. He also said the Chief is not cool, because it is too serious.

Well, Bryan, I do not know if you have ever been to a football game, but the Chief is oftentimes the best part of the whole experience. With all due respect to the football team, many people go to the games to see the band and the Chief.

During Chief performances, approximately 70,000 students and fans stand in complete respect and reverence for the tradition. The Chief is not racist or quasi-religious as Bryan says it is, and I would much rather have a “serious” mascot than something that is a joke. The Chief is a symbol for the qualities that all men strive to attain: bravery, courage, dignity, and strength.

It is not uncool. In fact, the tradition is one of the coolest things about the University. American Indians overwhelmingly support the Chief, as referenced by the 2001 Peter Harris Research poll that said 81 percent of American Indians support mascots like Chief Illiniwek. The students support the Chief, as referenced by the March referendum where only 10 percent of the 38,000 University students (approximately 4,000) did not vote in support of the Chief as the symbol of the University.

The Chief is the greatest mascot in college sports. With regard to confused protesters like Bryan, you people will always protest something even when the facts show that you are wrong. Why don’t you protest something that actually needs to be changed? Fight for real American Indian concerns, not school symbols, and please quit writing baseless letters to confuse new students.

Craig Sondgeroth

sophomore in ACES