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If you have not yet read this facinating and well researched book by David Scott, I highly recommend you do. While it certainly delves into scouting as a movement, it goes further in that it points out the reason Scouting at its best is so important to our society as a whole. One really interesting aspect is the discussion throughout of the struggles with how to deal with the Black youth, especially in the first few decades. The fact that there were Aftrican American scouts as early as 1911, and troops in the South in the twenties and on, is documented. It also discusses the assimilation of other groups of minorities and specially challenged. While NOT getting into the over the top histrionics, it even notes the recent change in youth membership as a positive move.


The quotes from the various presidents, while containing similar comments to some extent, all have at least one or two that indicate just how important they all appear to have found or find the overall program, both for youth and for the country. What is particularly encouraging, yet a bit scary, is the reasons the basic program is seen as so important by them all; that our youth are way too prone to being preyed on by less than positive elements, and that they desparately need guidance in determining right from wrong for themselves, their families, and society as a whole.


I realize that there will be those that find any book that is predominantly pro Scouting to be somehow misdirected or naive. But, if we simply look at the bare basics of the foundation, the Oath and Law, as well as the added Outdoor Code/Leave No Trace, and try and distance ourselves from the overly hyped political issues, it is STILL a sound and worthy program.


JMHO of course.

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