It's persuasive research time in the secondary schools again, and any librarian worth their salt knows what this means: Scores of eager, wide eyed teens asking, "Can you tell me where the books for legalizing marijuana are?"
Kids, please-- let's try something new.
The sporting world is ripe with controversy, and many of these subjects make handsome topics for research papers. One controversy still sitting firmly on the table in 2016 involves Native American mascots. I wanted to give you a heads up on a book I added to my collection that has gained significant use.
The Native American Mascot Controversy: A Handbook (2010) is an excellent collection of work that provides a comprehensive and critical account of the mascot controversy. The collection has important essays, position papers, legal policies, primary documents, and extensive lists of resources for further study. The editor C. Richard King divides the text into various categories that aim to educate students first on the issue and offer perspective later. Sections include: Background, Educational Issues, Reform and Resistance, and Documents: Policies, Resolutions, and Legislation. Like most issues, students are getting the watered-down media version of the mascot controversy at best. Kids understand there is an issue with mascots and that they are "offensive." But rarely can they answer "why" the use of these names is offensive to Native Americans. This resource is a fantastic tool to help students dig beneath the surface and really invest themselves in the issue. I fully believe that this book should be in every high school, university, and public collection. The writing is accessible enough for teens and broken up cleanly enough that can be easily mined for research sources. While the book is obviously not a pleasure read, it serves a great purpose in our libraries of showing kids there is still some value in print sources.