Long Beach’s California State University is set to choose another mascot after previous criticism about its origins.
The university chose Prospector Pete as its mascot in the early 1940s when President Pete Peterson said he “struck the gold of education” by founding California State University, according to the Los Angeles Times.
“Inclusive excellence is a core value of the Long Beach State University community,” President Jane Close Conoley said in a September statement, according to Inside Higher Ed. “I’m pleased to accept the recommendations of the committee and am grateful for the many hours that committee members spent listening to the many individuals who have a stake not only in the issue at hand, but also in the life and history of our campus.”
Critics had said Prospector Pete represents violence committed against Native Americans during the California gold rush and called for the mascot’s removal, according to Fox News.
The university is asking students to vote on a new mascot, offering options such as Pelicans, Sharks, Stingrays, Giraffes or the Kraken, according to Fox News.
Which mascot should replace Prospector Pete? Cal State Long Beach is asking https://t.co/KHOt8d3ua5
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The university website contains a statement saying the California gold rush was “a time in history when the indigenous peoples of California endured subjugation, violence and threats of genocide.”
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