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Letter: Utes pact still disrespects

Published April 24, 2014 2:54 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A Tribune editorial endorsed the recent agreement between the University of Utah and the Ute Tribe allowing the university to continue the use of the Ute mascot, stating this was not about money but about respect for the tribe. I am not sure that is entirely true.

The university had to reach this agreement to comply with the NCAA policy concerning Native American mascots. Two things are bothersome about this agreement. First, the university, as a state institution, should be doing what it promised in the agreement anyway, whether it uses the Ute name or not, and it should extend such services to all of Utah's tribes.

Secondly, the use of Indian mascots is more a national issue than just a local one. The editorial stressed that there are differences between the U.'s use of the "Utes" and others such as the Washington Redskins. If there is any difference, it is a slight one that may amount to a distinction without a difference. The time has come for us as a country to move away from the use of Indian mascots, and this agreement does not move us in the right direction.

Alex Skibine

Salt Lake City

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