FRANKLIN LAKES, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Members of the Ramapough Lenape Nation want the northern New Jersey town of Franklin Lakes to keep an image of a Native American on its logo.
The Borough of Franklin Lakes has asked residents to consider a logo with the depiction of the Native American and one without.
Borough Administrator Gregory Hart told The Record newspaper 74 percent of the 900 respondents picked the logo without the Indian.
Dwaine Perry of the Ramapough Lenape Nation said including such an image is perfectly appropriate given the history of the area.
“This is incorporating part of the actual history of the municipality, and in that sense, I think there’s also by necessity to historical honesty, you need to include something of a Native American touch,” he said.
Perry added that there is a vast difference between using a dignified image that represents native people and one that shows a caricature. He said he would like to see a change in the design.
“I would like to see a far better rendering of a Native American – it looks a bit more like Victor Mature than a native – but other than that, I don’t have any particular issue with it being used as a municipal log. It’s part of the history of the community,” Perry told 1010 WINS.
Hart said the town council has not decided whether to change the logo, which would cost taxpayers to replace printed material.
Three of the town’s nearly 11,000 residents identify themselves as being American Indians or of Alaskan descent.
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