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Military's aid to Boy Scouts is a front in larger legal war

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Interesting Topic...


This should help in this discussion...


From: Sir Robert Baden-Powell, Scouting & Youth Movements, London: Ernest Benn Limited, 1929, pp. 58 66.


Chapter VI, The Religious Aim


The aim of the Boy Scout and Girl Guides Movements is now generally understood to be that of making happy, healthy, helpful citizens. In this material age, with distractions and pleasures more than ever accessible, the training of the spirit is becoming correspondingly difficult, and is too largely neglected. Our object in the Scout Movement is to give such help as we can in bringing about Gods Kingdom on earth by inculcating among youth the spirit and the daily practice in their lives of unselfish goodwill and co-operation.


These virtues were laid down for such of us as are Christians by Christ, more particularly in the Sermon on the Mount; and they are equally applicable to all worshippers of God, whatever form of religion they may adopt. Therefore, in our Movement for youth we do not give preference to any one form of religion over another where all are working for the best in accordance with their respective beliefs. By the term Gods Kingdom I mean the prevalence of love in the world in the place of dominance of selfish interest and rivalry such as at present exists...


The Promise that a Scout or Guide makes on joining has as its first point: To do my duty to God. Note that it does not say To be loyal to God, since this would merely be a state of mind, but to do something, which is the positive, active attitude...Thus we teach them that to do duty to God means, not merely to lean on His kindness, but to do His will by practicing love towards ones neighbor. If this could be brought about as a genera rule, then, indeed, should we find heaven upon earth...


There is a similar situation in regard to creeds. The heads of different denominations in trying to come together in the greater bond of inter-denominational Christianity, find that their chief difficulty lies, not entirely with the other denominations, but rather with the more devoted adherents of their own particular faith. The development of broadmindedness, of goodwill and helpfulness, is urgently needed in the coming generation to bring creeds, and so to bring people, together. It is a duty of grave responsibility for all, but of great future importance and of extraordinary promise.






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It appears the statute that Merlyn referred to was Public Law 92-249 enacted by Congress in 1972.


From website: http://www.aphill.army.mil/sites/mwr/boysscout.asp


"All branches of the military service have given support to world and national jamborees. In 1972, Congress recognized such support officially when it enacted Public Law 92-249. Since the first Scout Jamboree in 1937, through the 2001 national Scout Jamboree, the military has provided personnel, equipment, and services of all types."


The same quote appears here in talking about the BSA and the military.



There is a more detailed explanation here



It looks like this statute does not include any other youth programs, but is an exclusive accommodation to the BSA. This statute dates from 1972.


The military and the BSA's relationship extend decades before this legislation was enacted. How does the ACLU lawsuit affect the relationship between the military and the BSA beyond this statute?


It seems that besides the judicial appeal process, the BSA and DOD might find another solution that would make the 2010 Jamboree a reality at Fort A.P. Hill.


If the military can quantify the benefits of its service to the BSA, then can the BSA quantify its benefit to the military as a training excersize and recruiting activity in some monetary measurement?


That might not eliminate the military bill, but the balance of those two measurements might substantially reduce it.



Cliff Golden


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