Dear Pocatello/Chubbuck School District 25,

It is a sad and disappointing day when I, and thousands like myself have to write a letter like this to point out the truth that you already know (or certainly should know) regarding your duty to stand for what is true and right in our community. I am writing about the absurdity that you are even considering changing the logo of “Indians” from the over a century old Pocatello High School.

I pose the question to you of, “when did honoring someone and paying respect to their heritage and legacy become a bad or degrading thing?” Over 120 years ago the first high school in Pocatello chose as its mascot the “Indians.” This was done out of respect for the Bannock Shoshone Indians and was/is done to honor their legacy and heritage.

It was not done to mock or disrespect them. I would be honored if a school or some other public entity chose to use my name or heritage as a symbol for a worthy and good cause. I hope that you would agree that educating our youth and teaching them through both secular and extracurricular activities is a worthy cause. Why would you even consider doing such a thing?

If you are going to go through with this ridiculous idea, then our city, county and many other cities and counties in our state, let alone our nation should also change their names…and that is absurd! As mentioned, the name of “Indians” for Pocatello High Schools mascot is in honor of the Native Americans…as is the name of our city, county and countless other cities, counties and states in our country.

It is a way to teach others that we do respect and want the heritage and history of the “Indian” people to be remembered. If you are going to change the logo, our city should also take down the fairly new neon sign in old town Pocatello honoring Chief Pocatello and the old theater.

In addition to this, the very architecture and artwork surrounding and within the school pays tribute to the Native American “Indians,” are you going to change this too?

Please remember that you are elected by the people to be the voice of the people and not to push your personal agenda or ideas. As a democracy we put things to a vote and the majority is that which is to take place…at least that is the way it is supposed to work.

Before you go and make such a foolish decision you need to hear, listen to and abide by the people. If you are intent on doing such a disgraceful thing such as changing a name that has existed for over a century then you need to put this to a vote.

You cannot just go on a few disgruntled persons who want to push their own agenda. That is what is wrong with our country now…we are letting a very few (especially the media and politicians) control what is said and shown. Leaders in general just jump on the bandwagon rather than doing the right thing.

History, bad or good is history and cannot be changed. We can and should learn from it and improve as we go. But, when good things have happened in our history such as honoring a Bannock Shoshone Chief by naming a city after him and choosing the first high schools mascot to be the “Indians,” how is that a bad thing and why would you want to change it?

For you to make this choice would be very foolish and would have negative repercussions for years to come. Before you make such a huge mistake I implore you to get the voice of the people…the majority, for I am positive that the overwhelming majority of our community would NOT want you to change the century old mascot of Pocatello High School.

Respectfully,

Clayton Armstrong,

Pocatello