When you look at a song that includes the line "A helluva, helluva, helluva, helluva, hell of an engineer," you might think it needs more than one word changed to fix it. But that's exactly what's gotten students at Georgia Tech riled up—and the word isn't "helluva."
A petition brought by a faculty member seeks to change a single word in the Georgia Tech fight song to make it slightly more equitable to women. A counter-petition to "Maintain the Georgia Tech Fight Song in its traditional form" has also appeared.
The proposed change in the song, which tells the story of an alcoholic "Ramblin' Wreck from Georgia Tech," would be in its second verse:
Oh! If I had a daughter, sir, I'd dress her in White and Gold,
And put her on the campus to cheer the brave and bold.
But if I had a son, sir, I'll tell you what he'd do—
He would yell, 'To hell with Georgia!' like his daddy used to do.
In the proposed version, the word "cheer" is substituted with "join," implying the singer would allow their daughter to attend college, and not just its football games. That's it.
The petition caused a bit of a stir, leading the school's Student Government Association to launch a poll on what students, faculty and staff think should be done about the fight song. It published the poll results last night.
With the exception of graduate students and faculty members, a majority of all demographics that responded to the poll were in favor of keeping the song "traditional."
The student government also asked in the poll whether respondents "think there is a pertinent issue of gender equality on our campus that should be addressed."
Regardless of the poll results, as the institution has released a statement saying it has no plans to change the song. So fear not students, no one is going to force you to imply you might want to send your daughters to college. Tradition is safe.