To the editor:
It is my belief that a mascot change for Southeast Missouri State University is unnecessary. I am a loyal supporter of SEMO athletics, having been a booster for many years. Because of past and current relationships with the university, I believe I am a credible proponent against this recent uproar.
What about honoring our heritage? Otahki was a Cherokee Indian who died along the Trail of Tears. We cannot change this deplorable part of our history, but we can continue to honor an oppressed people by carrying on with the 30-year tradition of using Otahkians to represent our women athletes.
Has cost been truly considered? How can SEMO justify spending an excessive amount of money on this change when programs and jobs have been eliminated?
What about courage? Should SEMO cave in to the moronic world of political correctness? The Kansas City Chiefs are still the Chiefs, and the Washington Redskins are still the Redskins. Consider the Capaha baseball team and Shawnee Park. Have some real courage and put this issue to a community vote.
When told that one of the names suggested was okra, Southeast basketball player Miah Shelford was quoted as saying, "I don't want to be known as a vegetable." Come on, SEMO. Take the hint and reconsider your priorities. Bring back the SE diamond and Fear the Spear.
JOHN A. HEUER