“I haven’t heard of any bad requests on the Southerners,” says resident Patricia Paine.
In the small town of Southside you can see this image off the highway, The Southerner.
“I just ain’t got no problem with it,” resident Dennis Markum says.
“It’s a great mascot,” says Paine.
But not everyone feels the same way as Patricia Paine. A similar mascot at Southside High School in Fort Smith could get the axe following the recent controversy surrounding the confederate flag and symbols associated.
This controversy comes after the racially motivated shooting that left nine dead at a black South Carolina church.
“I can’t understand people not liking that but Southerners. I don’t think it’s got anything to do with any of the controversy in the world or around the states,” Paine says.
Every school within the South Side School District is represented by the Southerner mascot and has been for years. That’s why many residents say the mascot doesn’t phase them.
“Nobody has ever said anything about it. I mean there is white kids black kids all kinds of kids that go there. You know it’s no big deal as far as im concerned,” says Markum.
As of right now the Southerner remains despite the resemblance to the rebel on its way out in Ft. Smith. And supporters like lane hope it stays that way.
“I just think people read too much into it and people are so over sensitive to certain things in our society right now,” Paine says.
We reached out to the school but we were told both the superintendent and high school principal are on vacation.