The Whitesboro village seal will be re-designed, following weeks of criticism and controversy.
On Friday, the Mayor of the Village of Whitesboro and the Oneida Indian Nation announced they will meet to discuss the creation of a new emblem.
The current seal, which appears on village vehicles and signage in Whitesboro, has been the subject of national scrutiny because it features an image many have called racist.
The seal appears to show a white man choking a Native American.The village says that man is Hugh White, who lived among the Native Americans as their friend, and the village seal depicts a friendly wrestling match that helped foster good relations.
On January 11th, the residents of the village supported keeping the seal as part of a non-binding, public opinion vote.
In a village board meeting that followed, many residents that supported keeping the seal explained that they want to keep the history, but have it re-designed to be more modern, detailed and culturally appropriate.
Mayor Patrick O’Connor says he was contacted by descendants of Hugh White’s family, who said they supported the effort of designing a new logo.
“In speaking with a lot of the residents that voted to keep the seal, I think they were surprised at the negative attention that Whitesboro was receiving as a result of the vote. They wanted to preserve history at the time of the vote, but also want to ensure that the Village is seen as the inclusive place that it is,” says Mayor O’Connor.
On Thursday night’s episode of “The Daily Show”, a segment aired, showing correspondent Jessica Williams in the Oneida County village, questioning Mayor O’Connor about the decision to keep the official seal.
After the segment, Williams appeared with host Trevor Noah and revealed that she had spoken to Mayor O’Connor that morning, and he told her that the seal will be changed to something that makes everyone happy.
The Daily Show’s story: