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Arab American group says Coachella Valley High mascot is a stereotype

November 08, 2013|By Melissa Rohlin

Coachella Valley High has received a letter from the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee in Washington complaining about its Arab mascot.

The mascot is a caricature that has a hook nose and a turban. During halftime of games, a girl dressed as a belly dancer dances for the mascot.

Coachella Valley High has apparently had the mascot for about 90 years.

"The 'Arab' mascot image is a harmful form of ethnic stereotyping which should be eliminated," Abed Ayoub, director of legal and policy affairs for the anti-discrimination committee, wrote in the letter. "By allowing continued use of the term and imagery, you are commending and enforcing the negative stereotypes of an entire ethnic group, millions of whom are citizens of this nation."

The superintendent of the Coachella Valley Unified School District, Darryl Adams, said he will reevaluate the mascot during the school board's next meeting Nov. 21.

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