Via Post And Courier:
If it weren’t for the escaped slave’s namesake, many might be completely confused about who the Robert Smalls International Academy is trying to represent with its new logo.
Even with the moniker, juxtaposing the famous South Carolinian with stylized art is likely to confuse even those familiar with the Civil War hero.
Some alumni and observers of Palmetto State history find the Beaufort school logo offensive.
It shows a man with a two-tone face, ponytail and Colonial-era garb with the words “Robert Smalls Generals.” The military title, the angular features, the expression — none recall the Beaufort native.
In 1862, Smalls sailed the steamship Planter out of Charleston Harbor and handed it over to the U.S. Navy. He later served five terms as a U.S. congressman for South Carolina.
“It is a slap in the face to anyone who has attended Robert Smalls, and it is an insult to all of us in the Beaufort community,” said Charlotte Brown, who attended Robert Smalls School from elementary school in 1955 until her high school graduation in 1967. “He has earned respect, not just locally, but nationally.”