‘Midget’ mascot backers press Illinois school to keep name

FREEBURG, Ill. (AP) — Supporters of a rural Illinois high school that has come under criticism for calling its sports teams ‘Midgets’ are rallying to keep the contentious nickname. A national group that represents people with dwarfism has asked Freeburg Community High School and a half-dozen other schools nationwide to drop what they consider an offensive reference. The Freeburg school board is scheduled to meet Thursday night to discuss the request the Little People of America’s request. The Belleville News Democrat reports that hundreds of residents, school graduates and current students plan to show up to speak in support of the Freeburg Midgets. The name was coined nearly 100 years ago by a local newspaper reporter after watching the school’s short basketball team beating larger opponents.