Another Stereotype of the Month entry:
I've got another nomination for your stereotype of the month—a birdhouse depicting "Chief Wahoo."
Here's my letter to the magazine that published the photo.
American Indian Sports Team Mascots
"Little drops of rain wear away the greatest of stones."
June 11, 2000
To the Editor
Birds & Blooms
5400 S. 60th Street
Greendale, WI 53129-1404
To the Editor:
Birds & Blooms is a beautiful and interesting magazine. That's why it's too bad the pages of this fine publication were marred an image of a birdhouse depicting the egregious racial mascot, "Chief Wahoo," used by the Cleveland MLB team (June/July 2000 p. 37).
Because the issue concerning the use of American Indian sports team mascots has been very visible in Wisconsin for years, the lack of sensitivity indicated by the editorial decision to use this racist icon in Birds & Blooms is all the more disturbing.
My only consolation is knowing that the winged creatures that feed at this silly and degrading birdhouse may also deposit something on it that appropriately shows the true value "Wahoo" and other "Indian" sports team tokens should be given in America of the 21st century.
For those with poor eyesight, the caption reads (in part): "...the 'Chief' is a home run with our feathered friends." Or, in other words, the Chief is for the birds.
If you have to illustrate a birdhouse, consider using something other than the Cleveland Indians logo. Or at least make it less garish. Do the words "ugly kitsch" suggest anything?
. . .
All material © copyright its original owners, except where noted.
Original text and pictures © copyright 2007 by Robert Schmidt.
Copyrighted material is posted under the Fair Use provision of the Copyright Act,
which allows copying for nonprofit educational uses including criticism and commentary.
Comments sent to the publisher become the property of Blue Corn Comics
and may be used in other postings without permission.