Rugby Emblem Raises Race Issues in South Africa

The South African rugby club decides to change its mascot due to the sport's racially charged history.



What comes to mind when seeing the bald eagle? The United States, I’m sure. Patriotism? Probably. An endangered species? Maybe. But, thoughts of a racially divided history? I doubt it. South African leaders are debating the decision to change the country’s rugby team emblem, the Springbok. This deer-like animal symbolizes grace and athleticism for the now-integrated rugby club. But, for some it is emblematic of Apartheid and the historically white-dominated sport. In the 16 years since the end of Apartheid, South Africa has come a long way in correcting their past. But, to me, this is a bit overboard. I'm sure, as Desmond Tutu said on the issue, that there are "better things to fight for."

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