That social justice has permeated even our religious institutions proves the Left is winning the culture war. Case in point: a Catholic university has given up its official "Crusaders" mascot because some might find it "troublesome" or worse, "offensive."
An official statement on Alvernia University's website states that it "has decided to change its institutional nickname and athletics mascot, which has been 'Crusaders' since the 1970s."
"A decisive factor in all these deliberations has been the strong advocacy for this change by the leadership team of the university’s Catholic sponsors, the Bernardine Franciscan Sisters, and the universal commitment to our Franciscan mission and core values."
Because the school apparently wants to make a federal case out of the issue, the school president is appointing a special "task force" to "review potential new nicknames."
Once the leading choices are identified, the task force will seek additional feedback from the campus and alumni representatives before presenting the top selections to the president for a final decision. We plan to announce our new nickname and athletic team mascot by mid-June 2017, with the new name to be used immediately. The statement adds:
Much has changed in the last decade. Alvernia is now well established as a thriving regional institution, with increased visibility nationally as a student-centered “Distinctive Franciscan University,” part of the proud tradition of Catholic higher education. Our visibility and reputation among small to mid-sized private schools, and among Catholic universities, is growing. We have received national recognition for civic engagement and gained respect as an interfaith leader locally and nationally.
Overall, our Franciscan identity is far more central, intentional, and prominent than a decade ago. And, like many others, both Catholics and those from other traditions, we are inspired by the message of a modern-day Francis who has been a prophetic voice for unity, inclusion and peacemaking.
We are secure in the conviction that this decision is totally our own, while respecting that other institutions have either made the same decision or decided not to change. Our serious and wide-ranging internal reflection has focused on our Franciscan mission and core values. The opportunity to engage diverse leaders of the Alvernia community in these deliberations and the unanimous endorsement of key university governance bodies reflects overwhelming support for change. Now we have the opportunity to make a positive change and to build on the increasing energy and loyalty to Alvernia University.
The school president claims to have consulted with "key university leaders and supporters, including the Faculty Council, the Alumni Council, and the combined leadership of our Student Government and Student Athlete Advisory Committee" to come to a unanimous decision about a formal mascot change.
This is important business, after all.
According to The College Fix, the Pennsylvania-based Franciscan university has received some discouraging comments on its Facebook page, with critics offering new nickname suggestions like the "Snowflakes."
We think that one is highly apropos.