Controversy over a school mascot is dividing students at a Henrico high school.
The Freeman rebels lost their confederate mascot years ago, but now some students want to bring it back.
The drama started last fall after Freeman High School students took a couple of surveys about what they thought would make a good mascot.
A number of them supported bringing back a controversial Confederate figure that some people consider offensive.
His name is Rebel Man and he’s the original mascot of the Freeman Rebels.
” It’s not meant to be a racial thing at all. It’s just a high school mascot,” says Alecsys Brown.
The rising senior started a petition to bring Rebel Man back to Freeman.
A more watered down version, still sported on some school spirit wear. This rebel man has been stripped of his muscat, stars and bars.
So far, she’s collected nearly 1400 signatures.
Brown insists, “It’s not like he’s promoting like slavery or like personifying racism in any way. That’s not who we are as a school. He’s just this guy in gray and blue.”
Freeman’s principal is adamant that Rebel Man will remain a thing of the past.
So the school’s considering alternatives. The most popular so far is a rebel lion.
At this point, the school’s administration plans to meet with students this fall to discuss other options.
One possibility is that Freeman will forgo a mascot altogether.
Regardless of what happens, students will remain the Freeman Rebels.
Copyright 2014 by Young Broadcasting of Richmond