This New York Village Voted To Keep Its Racist Seal
If you thought 2016 meant renewed hope for race relations in America you should probably think again.
Not even two weeks into the new year and we already have one of the most unusual cases of blatant and casual racism.
Residents of the New York Village of Whitesboro, near Utica, voted on Monday evening to keep their towns official seal exactly as it is.
The problem is, the seal depicts the town’s 18th century founder, Hugh White, seemingly strangling a member of the local Native American Oneida tribe.
— syracuse.com (@syracusedotcom) January 12, 2016
The vote wasn’t even close with 157 of 212 votes supporting no changes. The overwhelming majority doesn’t seem to see a problem with their seal.
According to New York Daily News, “The official story behind the image says that the tussle was a friendly wrestling match that helped White earn the respect of the land’s inhabitants, though that has not stopped activists from slamming it as disrespectful to Native Americans.”
The original seal dates back to the 1800s but was apparently changed in the 1970s to move the founders hands from the tribe members neck to his shoulders, so it looked less like he was choking him.
When a Long Island man started a petition, generating a lot of buzz last year, the Mayor, Patrick O’Connor, decided to let the 3,700 residents of the village vote on a new seal or keeping the old one.
Where do we even start with what’s wrong here?
Is it the fact that there’s a place named Whitesboro or should we be looking at it’s 99.5% white population as reported by the US Census?
If you thought blatantly racist things like this only happened in the deep south, this is a reminder for us to think again.