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Decision on Mascot Bill expected Thursday


MADISON, Wis. (WSAU) -- Governor Scott Walker’s decision on the Mascot bill will be known sometime today. It is the last day of the special Legislative session, and both the Assembly and Senate have passed the bill that would make it harder to force schools to change mascots and team names. Walker says he understands both sides of the issue, including how many native Americans consider indian team names racist. “If I could personally change things, I would find a way to deal with any school or local entity that had a nickname or a slogan or a mascot that was offensive and find a way to change that so it didn’t offend native Americans and others out there.”

Walker also believes we have to recognize everyone’s Constitutionally guaranteed freedom of speech. “Freedom of speech means freedom of speech, whether I think it’s good speech or bad speech, whether I agree with it or not, whether it’s offensive or not. Once you start reigning in speech just because someone or a group of people don’t like it, that’s a slippery slope.”

Current law allows a single complaint to begin the process forcing schools to change mascots and team names. The bill likely to be signed today makes it more difficult to force districts to change.