Amherst College drops ‘Lord Jeff’ as mascot
Concerns about Amherst’s message override tradition on the campus
After years of debate over the Amherst College mascot, the school has finally decided to drop Lord Jeff as their campus symbol.
For those of you who are confused, Lord Jeff was a colonial military commander who assisted the British in their victory in the French-Indian War.
He is a longstanding symbol of white oppression after advocating the genocide of Native Americans by giving them small-pox infected blankets more then 250 years ago.
In a postscript to a letter in 1763, he wrote, “You will do well to try to inoculate the Indians by means of blankets, as well as to try every other method that can serve to extirpate this execrable race.”
In the past year, student government has been polling around campus to see how students would feel about dropping the mascot, and in a faculty vote taken in December, it was the unanimous decision to have his image disassociated from the campus.
Despite this dissociation from Lord Jeffrey Amherst, the school itself will retain the name Amherst College.
Some who were upset by the decision to drop the mascot because of its “disregard for tradition” blame the reason for dropping on Amherst’s obsession with political correctness.
The campus, which only 40 years ago was comprised almost entirely of white males, has now transformed into one of the most diverse private colleges in the nation. And although change happens slowly, it is wonderful to see that the school has put aside it’s attachment to traditions and recognized what is really important here.
The only question now is: what will the new mascot be?