Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Monday, February 14, 2005

But At Least They're Reverent

Some of you may have heard by now that the Alabama Council of the Boy Scouts of America is being investigated by the FBI for fraudulently inflating membership roles (especially African American membership) to solicit greater charity donations.

I am an Eagle Scout. My involvement in scouting was one of the best things about my youth. I was also the Senior Patrol Leader of my troop (the most senior position held in the troop by a boy and in my troop, the office that ran all the day to day operations of the troop). Our troop was self consciously non-partisan in a heavily Republican neighborhood. As Senior Patrol Leader, I tried to see that scouts from our troop were not subjected to political indoctrination.

I am disgusted by the direction that the Christian conservative movement has taken scouting since completely taking the national organization over in the late 1980s and 1990s. Christian conservatives from the South combined with massively disproportionate representation of Mormons to transform a non-partisan, ecumenical and relatively multi-cultural youth movement into the quasi-official youth organization of the Religious Right. These groups have always been heavily represented in scouting but it is only recently that they have asserted their control over the national organization. Tolerant troops do still exist but they have little influence on national BSA policy.

The Scout Law is as follows: "A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent." The Alabama Council has reduced this to "A Scout is thrifty and reverent."

But George W. Brutus says the Boy Scouts are examples for us all...and Brutus is an honorable man.

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