From Everything.Sucks

Dixie (also known as Dixieland) is a nickname for the Southern United States, especially those states that seceded to form the Confederate States of America.

According to an articled written and published for THE SPECTRUM back in July 2020 by Kaitlyn Bancroft:

"Whatever 'Dixie' meant to the region's Mormon settlers in the nineteenth century, Dixie meant 'Confederacy' to the community in the twentieth century," Ross said. "When the institution had chances to create new names, it frequently made choices that embraced racist symbols and imagery."

Nancy Ross, a faculty member in the Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences Department at Dixie State University, has compiled a number of historical documents while researching the name Dixie. She, like Larsen-Rife, emphasized that when discussing this issue, she speaks only for herself and not for the university.

An online petition started this summer called for the name to change, pointing to the evidence of a long history of Confederate symbolism and Southern-style practices like minstrel shows and mock slave auctions as past practices with which the community should no longer associate itself.

Ross also said people in Washington County have "latched onto" the Confederate narrative and identity, and this kind of racism has been labeled as harmless by white people in the community "for far too long."

"Our racism is not harmless. Our Dixie is not a sanitized Dixie," she said. "Our Dixie references the Confederacy, enslaving people, violent racism, lynching and white supremacy, the same as it means everywhere else. ... It is time to make a change."

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