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10.5.04

Trojans And Indians

Belle Waring wonders why sports teams are named the "Trojans," considering that in the end the Trojans got soundly defeated. But it doesn't seem any stranger than all the teams named the "Indians," since the Indians also got beaten pretty bad in the end. Now, the Indian survivors and their descendants have made a (non-military) comeback, rebuilding their society and culture and pride. But that's not the era that the Chief Wahoo logos are trying to evoke, any more than "Trojans" refers (as some of Waring's commenters hypothesized) to their resurrection as the Romans.

In a way, though, picking a loser is appropriate. The ideals of good sportsmanship generally focus on being a good loser. So it makes sense to invoke the story of people reputed to fight nobly to the end despite being headed for defeat.

(Though I do note that, according to this list, there are nearly as many "Cowboys" (9) as "Indians" (10, plus two who have since changed mascots).)

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