Dixie State University in St. George, Utah will soon have a new name after a school committee voted 13-3 in favor of adopting a new school name to get with the times we’re living in. DSU focus groups determined that the school’s name was hurting the school’s image, according to Fox 13-Salt Lake City.
It’s not just the word Dixie that appears to be out. Naming the school St. George University is also out to avoid being thought of as a religious institution. Here are school names that are being floated: Utah Technological University, Utah University of Technology & Arts, Utah University of Technology & Humanities, Utah Polytechnic University, Utah Institute of Technology and Utah University of Technology.
“We love the heritage of our community. We love celebrating the regional definition of Dixie. We won’t change that. This is about saving the future of our graduates,” Dixie State University President Richard Williams said in February about the push to remove the Dixie name.
It’s been a wild 12-14 months for Dixie. In June 2020, the Dixie Chicks determined it was time to drop Dixie and just become The Chicks. “We want to meet this moment,” The Chicks said in a statement. That was it. And just like that, they made everything better. The world was healed because of their bravery.
What’s next for the name change police? Grocery store chain Winn-Dixie was being hunted down by the deputies around the same time as the Dixie Chicks were putting out one-sentence statements to change the world, one dropped Dixie at a time.
Winn-Dixie, which said in a statement from a company spokesperson that it supported Black Lives Matter, refused to change the chain name. “While we have no immediate plans to rename this banner, we have always been and will continue to be responsive to the needs and concerns expressed by the communities we serve,” Joe Caldwell from Southeastern Grocers said at the time.
It appears 2021 will be yet another big year for schools changing names. Several New Orleans schools have been targeted for name changes. In Jacksonville, Florida, six schools are being targeted for being named after Confederate soldiers.
And it’s not just schools and country bands who are going through name changes. CNN reports bird names are also racist and they’ll be changed. The Hammond flycatcher bird name is on the chopping block because it’s named after William Alexander Hammond, a former U.S. Surgeon General who reportedly tried “to collect brains of killed Indigenous people for study” and said black people were “little elevated in mental or physical faculties above the monkey of an organ grinder,” according to a birding website fighting for the name change.
“We are excited to put this important task into the hands of our ad hoc committee, and look forward to receiving their recommendations on the process for reviewing and changing English bird names to ensure ornithology and birding are as inclusive as possible,” the birding group said in a statement.
There you have it. Prepare for a busy year of the world healing via school name changes and beautiful renamed birds gliding through the air showing off how happy they are to no longer be racist-named little birds.
Stay tuned for what’s next from the name change police.