The legislature is considering a bill banning all public schools from using Native American nicknames, mascots, and symbols. That would affect the two-dozen-plus Massachusetts high schools that have mascots or logos referencing American Indians or Native American culture, including the Wayland Warriors. 
At a boy's volleyball game at Wayland High School last night, town resident Paran Sonthi, who is part Cherokee, said it bothers him a lot when sports teams use American Indian nicknames.
"I think it really impacts people who are of Native American descent like us," Sonthi said. "I feel like I can't really play or watch the sports when I'm so hurt by the name."
While he did not single out Wayland's use of warriors, Sonthi feels it's hard for others to appreciate how the general practice is patronizing to someone who has Native American heritage. 
A recent Washington Post poll has raised questions over how prevalent that opinion is among Native Americans, still many Massachusetts school districts have opted to drop American Indian mascots and logos in recent years. And that's something Newton resident Tom Gwin, whose son is a coach for Acton-Boxborough, supports.
"I think a number of schools have already changed," Gwin says, citing his alma mater. "I went to a college that changed from the Dartmouth Indians to the Dartmouth Big Green. The alumni didn't like it but you know it was the right thing to do."
A legislative committee is holding a hearing on the bill Tuesday.