• 70°

Editorial: Cannon Ballers mascot name misses the mark

Kannapolis’ minor league baseball team completed its rebranding Wednesday when the team named its new mascot.

In October, a team that had been the Phillies, Boll Weevils and the Intimidators became the Cannon Ballers. With the team’s new stadium being built in the area where the massive textile mill once stood, Cannon Ballers was an obvious and fitting nod to the Cannon family’s crucial role in building the city of Kannapolis. It wasn’t quite as simple and easy as choosing the “cannons,” but it was still a sensible choice.

Now, the team has named its mascot — sculpted to look like the city’s native son, Dale Earnhardt Sr., ready to be shot out of a cannon — Boomer. The team framed the name around the idea that the mascot would hit balls “out of the park.”

It’s a name about which younger generations won’t have to think too long before arriving at the phrase “OK, Boomer.” For the uninitiated, “OK, Boomer” is a derogatory phrase used by Generation Z, those born after 1997, and Millennials, born between 1981 and 1996, as a retort against their elders.

“You should stop playing video games and come spend time with your family,” the older generation says.

“OK, Boomer,” goes the reply.

It started out as a phrase made in jest, but has turned into more than that. It’s certainly seen by the Baby Boomer generation as an insult.

The team could have taken the easy route and chose Dale — in another nod to the NASCAR legend — or Charles — the longtime leader of Cannon Mills. Instead, Boomer was the choice after more than half of respondents selecting it and more than 60 submitted it before voting began. While it’s good that the team chose a name based on fan voting, it certainly had the ability to choose something else if it wanted.

That the Kannapolis baseball team has chosen to name its mascot “Boomer” won’t further an ongoing societal decline in generational relations or have any wide-ranging effects. After all, it’s just a mascot name.

But it’s going to prompt the same response from young folks who hear it for the first time — OK, Boomer — and likely teach kids a phrase that their elders have come to despise.

The team has completed its rebranding, with a new name and mascot. The name and look of the mascot are good, but the team could have done better in choosing a mascot name.

Comments

Local

Downtown residents, business owners say noisy construction is A-OK, sign of progress to come

Business

County unemployment rises in June, positive job growth seen in leisure and hospitality sector

Local

NC poet laureate will speak during historical marker celebration, talks about life, race

Local

Spencer moves back public hearing on longer, staggered terms

Education

High school fire academy lets seniors jump start a service career

News

Country Club of Salisbury unveils renovated clubhouse, plots additional upgrades

David Freeze

David Freeze: Biggest adventure day coming next

Local

South Ellis Street in for improvements because of $100,000 grant for BlockWork

Local

Little League softball: Rowan drops regional final, but moves on

Education

Catawba students, grads make it out to the ballpark for summer of baseball

Education

Education briefs: RSS Teacher of the Year gets Phillip J. Kirk Scholarship

News

North Carolina requiring state health workers to get vaccine

Nation/World

Infrastructure deal: Senate suddenly acts to take up bill

News

State briefs: North Carolina woman charged after 4-year-old shoots himself

Coronavirus

Rowan County among communities where CDC recommends masks indoors

Crime

Blotter: Shooters mistakenly fire bullets into woman’s West Kerr Street house

Local

Light installation could delay Bell Tower Green opening, but formal event still set for Sept. 10

Kannapolis

Kannapolis restroom listed among top 10 in the country, vying for top spot

Business

Mixed-use development planned near Atrium Health Ballpark

Local

Little League softball: Rowan plays for regional championship, qualifies for World Series

Nation/World

CDC changes course on indoor masks in some parts of the US

Nation/World

Racism of rioters takes center stage in Jan. 6 hearing

News

State briefs: Woman accused of taking baby to break-in

Nation/World

Man pleads guilty to 4 Asian spa killings, sentenced to life