There has been much controversy about the Rutland High School team name Raiders and valid points have been contributed by all sides of the issue. A compromise might be available.

Name the team’s name, Raiders, not in any way connected to a Indigenous American group but after Rutland’s own, Gen. Merritt (Red Mike) Edson, USMC, who at the outset of World War II, founded Edson’s Raiders.

Edson’s Raiders, officially, known as the 1st Raider Battalion, distinguished itself at the first offensive, Oct. 1942 in the Pacific at the battle for Guadalcanal. The Raider Battalion’s achievement was so pronounced, Edson received the Medal of Honor and 10 members of the battalion went on to become generals in the Marine Corps.

Rutland has already honored its hometown hero by having a monument on Route 7 and a bridge named after him. So, why not name the high school team after Edson’s famous fighting unit, the Raiders, which today’s Marine Corps has gone back to using to identify its special forces unit.

A postscript to the above, Edson, was responsible for the creation of the Vermont State Police in 1947. It is time to find common ground and move on.

Don Keelan


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(3) comments

Giles Music Studio

A wonderful collaborative solution. I had thought maybe a pirate head and still the Raiders, but this is better yet. A new symbol is all that would be needed.


I also think this is a much better solution than agreeing to continue to insult the local indigenous people. Let's hope that Edson wasn't using the same standard in selecting that name, or we'll be right back where we began.


I agree that Major General Edson and the 1st Marine raider Bn should be the context for the school mascot.

However I disagree that the word is an insult to anyone much less the 1st Nation peoples. Raiders describes a perfectly legitimate military tactic. All military entities used the tactics of conducting raids on their adversaries including the 'Green Mountain Boys' of Ethan Allen. His capture of Ticonderoga was essentially a raid. Doolittle's bombing of Tokyo in 1942 was a raid. I doubt that the native Americans who conducted raids on neighboring tribes or against the Europeans considered it to be a derogatory. It is only derogatory if you are looking for something to whine about and claim victimization. Enough of the BS, there are more important things to be dealt with like graduating students ready to take their place in the work force and live independent of their parents or folks who are always looking for something to cry about.

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