Radnor school board replaces “Raiders” moniker even though they really didn’t need to
In the dumbest piece of news I’ve read this week, Radnor’s school board announced it would be dropping Raiders as its nickname after 90 years. The replacement? The Radnor Raptors. No, seriously.
Before we go any further, I feel obligated to preface some things. First, I understand the name was long-paired with objectively racist Native American imagery. Unacceptable, change it. The idea of a race of people as a mascot is insane. And to Radnor’s credit, they have gone and done that.
As a long-time Radnor resident, I always thought Raiders was a weird name because it was associated with some Native warrior logo. Naturally, when I heard the nickname, I thought of the then Oakland Raiders. I was never a student, but I was around the school enough to see it and find it odd. So, when I heard they were looking to change the name, I thought they had a pretty obvious and easy pivot.
I’ve actually done some reading on this topic (shocker), and some people have said that Raiders is just as bad as the now-retired Washington Redskins. That, to me, is insane. Raiders is such a general term. So many different kinds of people have raided. There have been raids done on every continent by people of every skin tone. The other one is literally a slur.
Regardless, I’m not here to litigate this whole thing. I’m just trying to say that Radnor could have pivoted to a Pirate or a Viking style mascot and kept the Raider nickname. Instead, the school board made a unilateral decision to change the name, despite 70% of students voting to keep it. And, worse yet, the new nickname is the Raptors.
Unbelievable, man. Radnor went from an objectively cool nickname to the worst one imaginable. Raptors?? Am I overreacting to how bad the name is? Maybe, but I live alone and don’t get out much.
The first question that came to mind was, “Why?” There has to be a legitimate reason for that particular name. As I write this, I realize I don’t even care that the name was changed anymore. All I care about is figuring out why Raptors was picked.
Were there a lot of raptors in the Radnor area at one point? That has to be the only logical explanation, right? So, as any good journalist would do, I didn’t ask a single person involved and went straight to the fossil records.
Now, I understand many of you wouldn’t even know how to comb through fossil records properly. However, I received a C- in geology, so I knew what I was doing. Combined with the United States Geological Survey website, I was sure I’d find what I was looking for.
Unfortunately, the only thing I could find was more justification to hate that stupid nickname. Pretty much the whole area was underwater when the dinosaurs were around. What a bogus nickname, man.
I swear to god. If somebody tries to tell me “Raptors” refers to the population density of birds of prey in the region, I will become physically violent. If that was the reasoning, it would be absolutely unacceptable. Not to mention insanely dumb.
I actually just googled it, and that’s exactly what it is. I’ve officially lost all hope for this society. What a stupid idea. If you’re reading this and know who came up with that, tell them to drown.
At this point, be the Hawks or the Falcons or something. Or, just go with my plan and stick with Raiders. You can either get creative and do your own logo, or just straight up gank Las Vegas’. High schools steal logos from pro and college teams all the time.
What I would hate to see is the Toronto Raptors’ logo redone in Radnor gear and colors. One of the more well-known schools in the metro area now having the same logo as the team that shattered the entire Philly metro area’s hopes two years ago? No, sir. Not on my watch.
Hopefully, the Radnor school board will acknowledge the will of the people and get their shit together. At the same time, I wouldn’t count on it.
Mandatory Credit: WHYY