Change Dixie Hollins' mascot and name to remove tie to Confederacy

Change Dixie Hollins' mascot and name to remove tie to Confederacy

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Dixie Hollins Students . started this petition to Principal of Dixie Hollins High School Mr. Florio and

 In light of recent movements, we believe it is crucial now more than ever to change the name and mascot of Dixie Hollins. We understand that the school was named after a Superintendent on the school board that believed in integration of black and white students. There are ways to still honor that man, but alter the name to make it less offensive to the heritage of some students. The racist ties can no longer go ignored if we are to promote an environment of unity and diversity among newer generations. Dixie Hollins has made a change once--removing the use of the Confederate flag on school grounds. While responses were rocky at first, the decision ultimately turned out to be an immensely positive one.

 Origins of Dixie 

  “Dixie” has been used to describe the Southern US. If it was as innocent as another harmless nickname, that wouldn’t be an issue. However, it is often specifically used in reference to the Confederacy. 

  One popular instance of the usage of the word “Dixie” is from a racist song in 1859. It was created by Daniel Emmett and titled “I Wish I Was in Dixie’s Land.” This song grew immensely popular, especially within blackface performers in the South. It even was considered to be the unofficial national anthem of the Confederacy. The song itself represented an opinion that slavery was a beneficial thing. The protagonist (a horrible impersonation of an African American) makes suggestions that he longs for the plantation in the lines such as, “I wish I was in the land of cotton.” This represented the Confederate view that slaves belonged imprisoned and duty-bound. According to Tony Horwitz, a Pulitzer Prize reporter, the song was “part of the score of ‘Birth Of A Nation,’ the movie that helped revive the Ku Klux Klan.” 

Origins of “Rebel”

  During the civil war, Unionists referred to the war as the “War of Rebellion” and dubbed the supporters- especially soldiers- “Rebels.” The civil war was considered a rebellion because “Rebels” were convinced the November 1860 election of Abraham Lincoln threatened white supremacy and the institution of slavery.

  While the name “Rebels” may be a reference to a rebellious spirit, the previous misappropriation of the Confederate flag makes the name seem less of a coincidence. The use of the Confederate flag until 1971 at Dixie Hollins was very controversial, but well documented. The New York Times has multiple articles, both from 1971 and a more recent recap.

  Furthermore, our mascot that still hangs on the wall of the administrative building is never talked about. While he may not be on every website that represents the school, he is still used on some such as the website There, he represents the Boys’ Varsity Basketball, an account that is still very active. Assuming that he is representative of our school nickname, it is not a longshot to assume he is representative of a Confederate. 

Our Proposition

  We, as students that love this school and want to be able to announce that we attend it with pride, believe that there is a way to honor the man the school is named after while still cutting off the deep-rooted hatred attached to the symbols the school currently uses. A name along the lines of “Hollins High School” preserves the history but isn’t a reminder of the Confederate South. Also, a different mascot with less controversial tones would help push the school in the right direction. All of this is in an attempt to portray our school in the best light possible and to acknowledge the current activist movements.

866 have signed. Let’s get to 1,000!