UNLV To Take Down Hey Reb Statue
The statue is being removed.
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Hey Reb statue is no more.
UNLV has removed a statue of its Hey Reb! mascot from in front of its alumni center following protests from student groups at the campus.
A petition to abolish UNLV’s mascot was created Sunday following a letter from Jonathan “Doc” Bradley, who is a part-time political science professor at the university.
“The mascot, originally named “Beauregard” after the Confederate general who fired the first shots of the Civil War, presents a public image that runs counter to our core values and UNLV’s mission to become the leading multicultural university in the United States,” the Change.org petition read. Having a mascot that is inextricably connected to a failed regime whose single aim was to preserve the institution of slavery is an embarrassment to our campus and to our community.
As for Bradley, he lived in a variety of states in the South and is familiar with the Confederacy.
“To be fair, they’ve made some dramatic changes, but sadly, the saddest statement about this is a young person of color is going to be killed again, unjustly in our streets in the future,” Bradley said via the Las Vegas Review-Journal. “It’s already happened a couple of times. It’s going to continue to happen. Every time, these traumatic and horrible events come up in our society, people will go back to UNLV and say, ‘You’ve got this connection that you refuse that you refuse to do anything about, or you refuse to go ahead and make the necessary steps. As long as these actions of silence against people of color and people of poverty are legitimate by this idea, this holdover of this ugliness of Confederacy, that connection is still going to be there.”
UNLV actually had Confederate logos on-campus through 1976 when they were removed but the Rebels nickname remained in place. The school did do a study in 2015 on the Rebel name and found no connection.
At our former website, Chris Hondros wrote a lengthy piece about the Rebel nickname and the “Hey Reb” mascot back in 2015. He predicted the mascot would stand as well as the name, the former is gone and the latter is in place, for now.
However, his larger point is that the name Rebel is not 100 percent exclusive to the Confederacy.
A quick Google Search will define a rebel as “a person who rises in opposition or armed resistance against an established government or ruler.”
“a person who resists authority, control, or convention.”
While the first definition refers directly to the political/militaristic landscape of the world/country/region whatever, the second definition can be seen as the one that makes even more of an impact on an individualistic level. UNLV students (and really, any person to this point) should be proud of being Rebels, because they don’t conform to the norm, they should dare to be different and resist convention.
Famous Rebels because they were rebels with what they did:
Jerry Tarkanian – duh
Ickey Woods – How about re-inventing how you celebrated in the endzone?
Anthony Zuiker – Pretty much evolved the crime-drama genre with the creation of CSI.
Eric Whitacre – For those of you who aren’t much into the modern classical scene, Whitacre has blown people away with his choral compositions and has a Grammy to show for it.
Guy Fieri – Hate him or love him, you can not deny the impact he’s made on food travel shows.
There are much more, but the thing that ties these people together is their unwillingness to conform to the standard. So whether you are a rebel or a Rebel, with or without a cause, that spirit lives in each and every individual.
The recent events of George Floyd being killed at the hands of police officers which led to nationwide protests calling for reform and that also led to multiple statutes coming down that had to do with slavery and the Confederate.
UNLV is not alone in removing something associated with the Civil War and slavery. The University of Virginia is changing its logo due to the symbolism it has toward slavery.
The next big question about UNLV is if the name Rebel will change.