College students protest racist mascots coast to coast

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Students and faculty from two different schools are working to remove mascots that evoke two different, but equally vile, periods of American history.


Some students at University of Nevada, Las Vegas, held an anti-racism rally on Tuesday, The Las Vegas Sun reports. They demonstrated against the curriculum's lack of ethnic studies courses, the administration's gutting of UNLV's Department of Women's Studies, and the school's mascot, Hey Reb!, which has its roots in Confederate soldier iconography.

"We are one of the most diverse campuses in the nation," one graduate student said during the demonstration. "Why do we still have that [expletive] racist mascot?!"


On the other side of the country, students and faculty at Amherst College in Massachusetts have both voted in groups to remove their school's mascot, Lord Jeff, The Amherst Student reports. Jeff is based on Lord Jeffrey Amherst, a high-ranking officer in the British army who publicly supported the genocide of Native American and First Nations groups through the use of smallpox-ridden blankets.

A week of Amherst student-led protest preceded both votes. The New York Times reports that these demonstrations started as an act of solidarity with the students protesting at University of Missouri and Yale.

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