Native American leaders, allies protest race-based mascots - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Native American leaders, allies protest race-based mascots

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Demonstrators gathered outside the Kohl Center Friday night to peacefully protest the use of race-based mascots for school athletics.

Protesters stood outside and held signs prior to Mukwonago High School's WIAA state basketball tournament game. Mukwonago's mascot is the Indians. Wisconsin Indian Education Association board member Rachel Byington says the use of race-based mascots promotes negative stereotypes.

"It's harmful to non-native students and native students," says Byington. "Research shows that it actually elevates self-esteem of non-native students, and it decrease self-esteem of native students."

Gov. Scott Walker signed a law into measure last December that makes it more difficult to force school districts to change race-based mascots.

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