It’s days like this I feel really old. One of the responses I read to the Boy Scouts announcing that girls could now participate at all levels of Scouting was
Why can’t girls join the Boy Scouts?
I think we can officially retire the word “oxymoron” from the English language!
As an Eagle Scout myself, what do I think this is all about? Sad to say but it’s all about the money.
When I was a scoutmaster, one of the things I quickly learned was that the majority of parents saw Boy Scouting as a means to send their son off somewhere for one weekend a month to what was normally a campout. Even better, you could send them to summer camp for an entire week! The beauty was the parents felt noble because their boys were doing “guy things” and having fun; which they were.
In my case, I was just out of college and was single. The perfect choice for a scoutmaster since what else did I have to do with my time? When it came time to go on the first campout, not a single parent volunteered to go. So I cancelled the event. The parents were outraged! Why? They’d all made weekend plans. I actually wound up cancelling the next two events as well until the fathers finally got together and worked something out where they would rotate volunteering.
The BSA said it commissioned two surveys that showed parents not involved in scouting had high interest in getting their daughters signed up for both Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts. Well, duh! What a wonderful thing! You can now pawn off the entire family to some other adults so you get a free weekend once a month!
And, of course, Boy Scout membership expands making up for the loss in membership they’ve experienced in recent years. It’s all about the money. In their press release, the BSA said:
Families today are busier and more diverse than ever. Most are dual-earners and there are more single-parent households than ever before, making convenient programs that serve the whole family more appealing. Additionally, many groups currently underserved by Scouting, including the Hispanic and Asian communities, prefer to participate in activities as a family.
It’s no longer about the kids . . . it’s about the mother and father or mother and mother or mother and no father or father and father or father and no mother. Or whatever! I’ve given up keeping track!
Should girls be able to do the same activities as boys? Of course, and if the Girl Scouts aren’t fulfilling that need, that’s on them.
The BSA also said:
This unique approach allows the organization to maintain the integrity of the single gender model while also meeting the needs of today’s families.
Of course this will all start off with gender segregated dens and troops but how long is that going to last? I suspect until the first lawsuit where some teenage boy identifies as a girl. WAHOO! Now there’s every teenage boy’s dream come true! [Note 1]
Let me just close with what should be obvious but in today’s climate probably isn’t — there is no way in hell I’d be a scoutmaster for a group of twenty teenage boys and girls out on a weekend of camping! I would never take on that responsibility and the inevitable outcomes.
The Boy Scouts have gone completely mad.[Note 1] I don’t even want to get into it!