FRESNO, California (KGPE) – A newly filed lawsuit could delay Fresno High School from changing their mascot logo.
The mascot is currently the warrior, but the logo is of a Native American man which some found offensive. That led to the Fresno Unified Board of Education voting to change it.
However, one Fresno resident is claiming his voice was not heard and that prompted him to file a lawsuit. That lawsuit could delay the process of changing Fresno High School’s logo – if the state picks it up.
James Tuck’s lawyer Ryan Griffin filed the lawsuit on Monday, alleging that the Fresno Unified Board of Education violated the Brown Act on Dec. 9, 2020, when the board voted 6-1 to change the Fresno High School symbol.
The Brown Act of 1953 guarantees the public’s right to attend and participate in meetings of local legislative bodies. Tuck and his lawyer argue that the Board of Education ignored and censored his opposition to the logo when it was voted on.
Jamie Nelson created a Change.org petition to change the mascot logo.
“Know that there are 1500 different organizations, not just one wayward group who stand against these mascots,” said Nelson.
Nelson said he has received thousands of signatures from current students and alums and the district is aware of the petition. However, Tony Henson with the Native American Guardians Association is siding with Tuck and supports his lawsuit against the district.
“It should have never been done just return things to the way that it was and actually build upon that tradition and start implementing beautiful Native American education,” said Henson.
Henson said the suit could slow down a mascot changing trend that’s taken hold across the country.
“Obviously, we are very supportive of the lawsuit. What we have seen is this is something that is going on nationwide and really picked up last year with the cancel culture,” said Henson.
Fresno Unified declined to provide a statement – saying they do not comment on current litigation.