University of Florida Will Discontinue Their ‘Gator Bait’ Chant Due To Racist History
Could it be that America is starting to wake up and make changes to rectify its racist past?
We have had brands like Aunt Jemima, and Uncle Ben's (just to name a few) make conscience decisions to rebrand their products that depict African-Americans in a negative light, and now it is starting to affect the world of sports as one college team is putting an end to a legendary school chant.
The University of Florida, home of notable football players like Wilbur Marshall from my beloved Chicago Bears and my second favorite NFL running back Emmitt Smith of the Dallas Cowboys, has decided to stop using its famous 'Gator Bait' chant due to the term's racist history.
In a press release, from President Kent Fuchs on Thursday (June 18th), Fuchs mentioned while he knows of no evidence of racism associated with the 'Gator Bait' cheer, he is aware of the horrific racist history that comes with the phrase.
According to history, babies of African-American slaves were used as 'gator bait' to catch alligators in Florida per the Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia.
The article would explain in detail back in the late 1800's and early 1900's that babies of slaves would be taken while their parents weren't watching, and tied up by the banks at night and as soon as the gator would attack they would kill the gator.
While some disagree with the decision, I am very pleased that people are actually listening and putting action behind putting things in place to combat racism.
Who knows, maybe more schools, sports teams, and even businesses will do more to ensure African-Americans will have a level playing field in racial equality.
Only time will tell.