Marion Board Votes to Officially Drop ‘Mavericks’
Six months after agreeing to drop the Marion Indians team name and mascot, the Marion Independent School board voted on Monday night to officially reject the name that was voted to replace it, saying it too, was deemed too offensive. The Cedar Rapids Gazette reports that the board voted 5 to 2 to reject the name Mavericks. The name was approved by the board back in February.
But soon after being approved, that name came under fire. The Gazette reports that the name Mavericks, was initially chosen because of it's definition of an independent thinker, named for Samuel Maverick who refused to brand his cattle. But the district soon found out that the early 1800's Texas rancher was at one time, a slave owner.
School board member Diana Zrudsky pointed out at last night's meeting that the entire school board is made up of white members. The Gazette reports that Zrudsky stated, "How many people of color do we see represented here around our board table? We can do our best to be inclusive and work to understand our own biases and make decisions accordingly."
So what comes next? The school board has agreed to start the process from scratch. The Gazette reports that the board will also continue to work with VIP Branding to determine the new mascot. They are not being paid by the district for their services. Mike Manderscheid, who is on the team name and mascot committee, says that the committee is "diversifying the group a little more." The group will meet on Wednesday to discuss the next steps, which will be presented to the school board on April 26th.