‘Save the Sioux’ campaign plans Fargo stopsSupporters of the University of North Dakota keeping its Fighting Sioux nickname plan “Save the Sioux Truth Tour” stops in Fargo Friday and Saturday to promote a “no” vote on Measure 4 in Tuesday’s North Dakota primary.
By: By Chuck Haga , Forum Communications Co., The Jamestown Sun
Supporters of the University of North Dakota keeping its Fighting Sioux nickname plan “Save the Sioux Truth Tour” stops in Fargo Friday and Saturday to promote a “no” vote on Measure 4 in Tuesday’s North Dakota primary.
The measure asks voters whether legislative action in November allowing UND to retire the name should be affirmed or overturned.
Eunice Davidson, a leader of the pro-nickname Committee for Understanding and Respect at the Spirit Lake Sioux Nation, said Wednesday that she and other nickname supporters from Spirit Lake and the Standing Rock Sioux Nation would take part in the rallies.
Ben Brien, an Ojibwe Indian from the Turtle Mountain Band who designed the much-revered Fighting Sioux logo in 1999, also will be on hand “doing autographs for anyone who would like one on their favorite jersey,” Davidson said.
She said the nickname supporters will have petitions available for a proposed initiated measure aimed at securing the Fighting Sioux name in the state Constitution.
About 27,000 signatures are required to be filed by early August to place that measure on the November general election ballot. Davidson said the committee has set a goal of collecting 40,000 signatures, “and we’re over halfway to achieving that.”
In a separate statement released today by Sean Johnson of Bismarck, a spokesman for the nickname supporters, he said support for the proposed constitutional amendment “has been growing tremendously… since the UND Foundation began their ‘Vote Yes’ tour centered on generating fear.”
Tim O’Keefe, executive vice president and CEO of the UND Alumni Association and Foundation, joined five UND coaches Tuesday and Wednesday at news conferences in Fargo, Bismarck and Minot to urge a “yes” vote.
O’Keefe and the coaches said the potential cost of NCAA sanctions, if the nickname remains, is too high.
Davidson said nickname supporters will be across from the West Acres Mall from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday, and in the Buffalo Wild Wings parking lot across from the Fargodome from 1 to 6 p.m. Friday and all day Saturday.
Chuck Haga is a reporter
at the Grand Forks Herald, which is owned by Forum Communications Co.