SAN LORENZO (KPIX 5) — Look closely at the campus and ball fields of San Lorenzo High, and you will see a school with a bit of an identity crisis.
“We just want a mascot,” said San Lorenzo High junior Raul Dominguez.
The school used to go by the nickname “the Rebels,” but in today’s political climate, that became an issue for some. Especially since the old mascot was a Confederate soldier known as “Colonel Reb.”
“In the yearbooks they found, like, confederate flags and stuff. Just like, some racist stuff,” said Sarah Giles, another San Lorenzo High junior.
The school tried changing its mascot to a cartoon frontiersman nicknamed “Rebel Guy” but that was too little, too late.
So over the summer, all mentions of the Rebels were removed from the campus. The baseball uniforms now only say “SLZ.”
When asked if he missed Colonel Reb, San Lorenzo High baseball player Nio Filimigo replied, “Heck yeah!”
He wasn’t enthused about having ”SLZ” emblazoned on the uniforms either.
”That is…terrible. That’s a terrible name,” bemoaned Filimigo.
The district began surveying people about a new mascot and many seemed pleased with the name “Phoenix,” a mythical bird rising up from the ashes.
School officials were all set to go with that until someone pointed out it is also part of the logo for a white supremacy group. So now, the district has scrapped that name too, even though it’s already the symbol for the City of Phoenix, the Phoenix Suns basketball team and — wait for it — the flag of San Francisco.
“Now I’m getting kind of irritated with it, because of how many times we’re going to be changing it?” asked Giles. “Like, the Phoenix? I don’t know why they gotta change it again. I mean it’s a bird, you know?”
The district is learning how hard it is to keep everybody happy. So for now, the baseball team will have to get by with just its initials.
“I mean, we can make the letters work, but it’s not as exciting as it should be for a high school student,” saud Filimigo.