Thursday, September 18, 2008


There's been talk in the U.S. presidential race about "phony outrage." I'm curious, does today's Hatchet editorial calling the University "heavy-handed" for phasing out the hippo resonate as a real controversy for folks?

Some specific parts that caught my eye:
The University's eventual removal of the hippo, a mascot students love and embrace, is a heavy-handed, unilateral and poorly defended move that should be seriously reconsidered.
Do you actually love the hippo?
Students have embraced the hippo as representative of the more whimsical side of the University. On a campus populated with BlackBerrys and suits, the hippo grounds us and keeps our college image lighthearted.
Is there really a whimsical side and non-whimsical side of GW? (And if anything represented pure whim, is the hippo a better example than, say, random Greco-Roman structures near the Gelman library?)
What the administration should realize is that the hippo is GW's most distinctive brand.

When I think about Georgetown, I don't think about the Hoya--I think about a good school, the one that Bill Clinton went to. If I was neutral in this "controversy," learning that the hippo is GW's most distinctive brand might actually be the strongest argument for ditching it.


Anonymous said...

Never really thought much about it.

Anonymous said...

I think your personal opinion leaves little room to actually debate -- many people feel passionately for the Hippo and what it stands for.

As an academic blogger, you've epitomized the worst of the online experience. Nice. Atleast the Hatchet or the Colonialist aren't so subjective as to completely squelch any other debate.

Phony outrage my a##. What kind of pulpit do you stand on to trivalize my opinion?

Will said...

The hippo rules! Don't lose it, GW.

AdamGreen said...

Anonymous #2...

I pretty clear expressed my skepticism that this is a huge outrage for students, but leave the door open to being wrong, and ask folks for their opinion.

Sounds like your asking me to hide the ball on my skepticism? But why do that? Especially when it's the underpinning for my entire question.

If you think it's an outrage, by all means say why. No need to shoot the questioner.

Anonymous said...

I'm less angry about the actual removal of the hippo than the way the administration did this (has been doing it!) without even saying anything. That's the real outrage, I think.

Anonymous said...

The Hippo is the only good mascot we've got. The Colonials do suck, they're neither intimidating nor do they mean much to me personally. The Hippo, on the other hand, has an actual traditional foundation at GW that everyone loves to hear about. I actually am really outraged that they're doing this, and I think that if they don't have the rights for it, the better idea would be to get the rights, or make it our official mascot. Everyone complains that there is no "tradition" or "history" on our campus. Way to go GW for getting rid of one of the few things that did.

Anonymous said...

you people whine way too much. when you graduate, your boss won't care and won't have time to listen to your dumb bitching.

Anonymous said...

Pretty miserable summary of the editorial in my opinion. This blog really does a great job of basically opposing everything the Hatchet says with little debate outside of that. I know The Hatchet blows, but this is just plain silly. You sound ridiculous.

That being said, I definitely agree with the other poster concerning the fact that the administration basically did this without any consultation.

Sure, it's a Hippo. Yes, it's just a mascot. But it represents a story, something whimsical (yes, it's possible to look up from your Blackberry and see the lighter side).

To the person who wrote that those concerned whine too much: Sure, our bosses won't care what mascot we had or what we found funny or special about our university. But if you're applying on that basis, you're pretty *%@%ed anyway. Stories like this represent memories we hold personally long after our first job. Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

I just talked to the administration and I learned that the Hatchet story was a lie. The university said they couldn't trademark the Hippo but they never said it was going away. In fact they said it would be back stronger this year and now at more basketball games.

Anonymous said...

Just because the university says it isn't axing the hippo doesn't mean the Hatchet lied. As a professional journalist, I see this shit all the time. You publish someone that make an institution look dumb... they change course... and then they say YOU were lying all along.

I have emails I can sure with you from the office of the university president... at the start of the day they said they were "blindsided" by the decision, and then by about 5 p.m. they said the story was inaccurate.