Axemen meet to discuss "Axemen"

Most of the people gathered at South Eugene High School were against changing the school's nickname.

Posted: Jan 31, 2018 11:56 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- A large majority of residents who gathered at South Eugene High School on Wednesday night said they are against changing the school's nickname.

About 70 people showed up for the community forum to discuss the "Axemen" team name.

Those opposed to changing the mascot said it was a school tradition. Besides, some said, the expense of removing the logo and replacing it with something else seems like a waste of money.

"It would be really disappointing to get rid of it," Kelsey Brown, a junior at South Eugene, said. "And I think that we have so many issues at this school financially that it would be absolutely wasteful."

But those in favor of the name change said a team name should be gender neutral.

"In my opinion, if Axemen was all gender inclusive, then why would people feel the need to say 'Lady Axe' or 'Axe Women'?" a freshman named Julia told the crowd. "Those names aren't even really allowed, they are just in the background, and that's how I feel with this mascot."

An online petition has generated 3,680 names of people in support of the Axemen name.

School principal Andy Dey says he will make a formal recommendation about the name change to superintendent Gustavo Balderas in the coming weeks.

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