I don’t get this sycophantic treatment Dooley receives from apparently every member of the Emory community except for me. I realize the fact that we don’t have a football team is a sore point of insecurity for us Emory students, but that doesn’t mean that we should cling tightly to Dooley, no questions asked, simply because he brings a semblance of school spirit to our campus.
Dooley’s legend is a cute little Emory quirk that makes a good bullet point on a brochure for prospective students. But at the end of the day, he’s just another overhyped mascot. Okay, so he lets a few classes out — so long as the approval of the professor is secured beforehand, no doubt — during one week out of the 30-plus weeks that comprise the school year. Cool. But other than that, all Dooley does during his namesake week is send out a few creepy e-mails about how he’s watching us, and I’m not sure that makes me feel very comfortable.
I mean, does no one realize how strange it is that practically our entire student body is obsessed and in love with a nonhuman being who’s over 100 years old, who lurks around campus watching us and occasionally catching us unawares, promising he’ll “live on forever”? Dooley has unintentionally turned our lives as Emory students into a bad Twilight spin-off, and for that, he can never be forgiven.
Not to mention all the skeletons in Dooley’s closet that he’d rather keep under wraps. Brought into existence in 1899 as a writer for the Emory Phoenix, the student newspaper at the time, Dooley was certainly a controversial columnist. In 1921, he wrote a piece after encountering black church-goers in the chapel, declaring that they “belong in the kitchen” and later beseeching students to “Keep Kampus Kleen.”
Seems like we’re so desperate to have something awesome and unique, we’ve gone into complete denial about who Dooley really is. I don’t know how the rest of the student body feels about all this, but I think it speaks pretty poorly of the other mascot when all you have to say in defense of the first is, “at least he’s not a flaming bigot.” So, yeah, way to represent the “spirit of Emory,” Dooley. Very nice job.
And what’s up with this posse of body guards that follows him wherever he goes? Who does he think he is, Britney Spears? At least Swoop doesn’t think he’s too cool to get close to students — in fact, he was at the Dobbs University Center around dinner time yesterday, waving and flapping his wings at harassed-looking freshmen.
Maybe Swoop’s not as glorified as Dooley is on our campus, but that’s our fault, not his. Plus, he’s an eagle, so if you don’t like him — well, that’s just un-American of you.
Editorials Editor Catherine Cai is a College junior from Atlanta.