Indian tribe helps develop Spokane logo

November 30th, 2006  
Team Infidel

Topic: Indian tribe helps develop Spokane logo


Associated Press

SPOKANE, Wash. - While many teams with Indian nicknames, logos or mascots are criticized as culturally insensitive, the Spokane Indians unveiled their new logo featuring eagle feathers Wednesday with the blessing of their namesake tribe.
The minor league affiliate of baseball's Texas Rangers developed the design with the Spokane Tribe of Indians.
The logo, a red 'S' over a baseball inside a circle containing two eagle feathers, replaces the existing logo that contains the words "Indians" and "Spokane" over a baseball.
An alternate logo features the words "Spokane Indians Baseball Club" written in Salish, the native language of the tribe, whose reservation is about 50 miles northwest of Spokane.
"We are excited about our new look, but most of all we are proud of our strong partnership with the Spokane Tribe," said Andrew Billig, president of the Class A club.
Team officials said they wanted to avoid American Indian imagery when they began considering a new logo two years ago, but found in meetings with the tribe's culture committee that a design using subtle and respectful Indian images would be welcomed.
"The Spokane Tribal Council, along with comments from its culture committee, and community elders wanted to use this opportunity to build a long-lasting successful working relationship with the baseball team carrying the Spokane Tribe's name," the tribal council said in a statement supporting the new logo.
There are no plans for the team to have an Indian-themed mascot. The team's current mascot is called Otto the Spokanasauraus.
Last year, the NCAA discouraged use of ethnically or racially "hostile" or "abusive" nicknames, mascots and imagery, prompting several universities to change or agree to change their nicknames or logos.
The College of William & Mary in Virginia said it will phase out the use of the school's athletic logo, using two Indian feathers. Oklahoma's Northeastern State is changing its nickname from Redmen to RiverHawks to comply with the NCAA ban.
The University of North Dakota sued the NCAA after its appeal to keep the Fighting Sioux nickname was rejected.
The Washington Redskins of the NFL and major league baseball's Cleveland Indians and Atlanta Braves also have received criticism for their mascots or cheers.

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