Dueling Petitions Debate Name Change for Esko Eskomos
The two petitions have garnered nearly 4,000 signatures combined from the local community.
ESKO, Minn. – Two weeks ago, Esko student Karin Anderson began a petition to change the Eskomos nickname, saying that it is a racial slur used against indigenous people. And it’s getting some traction online.
The petition has been signed by over 2,300 people in support of the name change. Anderson wrote a letter to the Esko School Board, which was read to them during Monday night’s meeting. Esko superintendent Aaron Fischer read an excerpt from that letter.
“Several other businesses and sports franchises are choosing to move away from this name because of this issue, and so do we. I know that the school board has a lot to decide right now, but this racism has been the face of our school for too long. This issue has people’s attention. Choosing not to act is just as much as choosing to act,” read Fischer.
There is also another petition, which calls for keeping the name and has over 1,700 signatures. That was created by another Esko student, Alex Bourgeault, and he wrote a letter to the school board as well.
“The Eskomo with “O” name comes from our original name the “Esko Mos”, meaning regular Joe’s from Esko. Changing the name will only give off the fake feeling of a win against racial injustice, when the only true victories can come at the legislative level with the ending of qualified immunity and the no-knock warrants that killed Breonna Taylor. I ask that you don’t fold to a virtual signing mob,” Fischer read.
Two members of the Esko class of 1997 also spoke during the meeting in favor of the name change. No word yet on if the board will begin looking into the situation.