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UncleP

Push for Coed Scouting

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I knew this would interest everyone, so I am just posting it.  Two things I noticed were - 1) a great deal of the desire to make Boy Scouts coed seems to center around girls having the opportunity to earn the Eagle Rank, and 2) one person who comments its states that they have they know that girls do best in an "all girl, girl lead" environment, while still advocating that the Boy Scouts be coed.

 

 

 

http://www.kiro7.com/news/local/15-year-old-new-york-city-girl-spearheads-campaign-to-make-boy-scouts-coed/493469156

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The more I hear from folks who feel strongly about this, the greater diversity of opinions I discover.

 

My Czech and Italian scouts simply don't understand what the problem is. The option of coed scouting was all they ever known, and their parents preferred that they come up through coed units. The Czechs are aware of the diversity of units in their district (all male, all female, and coed) and they thought their coed troop was best. The Italian (I don't think) has no knowledge of single-sex units except girl guides, and she is quite proud to not be a Girl Scout. Her "council patch" reads "Boy Scouts Italy" and, from the outset her patrol was mixed. None of the pride these kids have in their units had anything to do with awards that give one economic advantage in adulthood. In fact, upon reaching high school, the Italians, I'm told, no longer may peruse rank advancement.

 

The Girl Scout Gold award is a challenging achievement, but it's only been around since the 80s. It's a shame that NESA has not expanded to recognize GS Gold awardees, and Venturing Silver (now Summit Award) recipients, But because of their singular focus Eagle has been hyped above other awards.

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Ugh, this is just getting ridiculous. Why can't the world today just let an organization made for boys BE FOR BOYS? I hope the BSA National Board ignores this "push" entirely. Just because lots of people want it doesn't make it right.

 

Also: The NESA is by very definition THE NATIONAL EAGLE SCOUT ASSOCIATION. Why should an organization designed for Eagle Scouts have anything to do with other awards? Let them come up with their own societies. To suggest that an association of Eagle Scouts include people who ... aren't, doesn't make any sense. It's trying to be inclusive at the cost of preserving the special nature of the Eagle Scout award in the first place. As one of my favorite movies points out, "when everybody is special, nobody is."

 

It reminds me of something about which I constantly have to remind my students and Cub Scouts - despite what modern opinions try to teach people, FAIR does not mean everybody gets the same thing. FAIR means everybody gets what they earn

Edited by The Latin Scot
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I have been involved with youth for 45+ years now and many of those religious and community organizations are co-ed.  It's not that I'm against co-ed programs.  It's just that the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts in America have been separate since the beginning and I feel that they offer a unique alternative to other youth programs.  Why can the youth have their own sex based program?  It's the last such nationally recognized such organization available.  Once it's gone, there will be just a few peripheral programs still out there that don't hold the popularity of the Boy and Girl Scout program.  It would be a shame that in the name of diversity it be abandoned.  

 

For this reason alone, I'm with @@The Latin Scot on this one. --  "It reminds me of something about which I constantly have to remind my students and Cub Scouts - despite what modern opinions try to teach people, FAIR does not mean everybody gets the same thing. FAIR means everybody gets what they earn."  except I would change the last part to everybody gets what they want.  Girls and boys should have at least one option of a program designed specifically for boys and girls separately.

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Back to OP, I hope Scout Sydney Ireland is allowed to join so as to have a fair chance to justly earn her Eagle.

 

Fair versus just. There is a difference, What is fair is not necessarily what is just. What is just may not seem fair.

 

When I was young scout, just meant the same requirements for all scouts. When you earned your Eagle you stood with other scouts who shared the same accomplishments and not just the medal. No one was special. I struggled for months with the pull-ups and push-ups required for Personal Fitness but that was the standard and all Eagles met or exceeded those requirements. There were no 300lb Eagle Scouts; there were no Eagle Scouts with disabilities. All Eagles had a Rockwell uniformity.

 

Years later, fair meant meeting similar requirements per special needs. Everyone is special, There were now alternate requirements. Every scout would now have a fair opportunity based on their abilities to earn Eagle. Just?

 

I bet Scout Ireland could match or exceed my accomplishments towards Eagle. Maybe Scouting will open to all kids who must meet the same requirements for advancement. That sounds just to me.

 

My $0.02

Edited by RememberSchiff

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I find it ironic that many of those who push for "just" or "fair" causes continue to advocate for other divisive policies. If we are going to give true equity a chance (allow girls to make Eagle), then let's remove all other barriers as well. No more college apps that require sex, age, race, religion or other such questions. Take people based solely on blind scores and outside activities.

 

Why won't that ever happen? Because they want to suppress those they fear are "privileged". Do that and I don't care if you open up Scouting. But we all know that will never happen. This movement is about taking down religious, male, conservative institutions.

 

https://edtrust.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/equity.jpg

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If getting Eagle is the only reason for going co-ed, then hand out Eagles like candy, the reason for the Eagle is lost to history.  It's been going downhill for years, this would make it the last step.  It is truly a shame that it has become nothing more than a reference on a college application and a footnote on a business resume.  It's not a Scouting rank, it's a magical talisman instead of a level of an indicator of male character and moral development.

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I wonder if this would even be a question if we ditched the Advancement method.  Seems like most of the arguments are about the ability to get Eagle...not having to deal with the helicopter parents that see advancement as a aim would make my life a lot easier. (Yes, I know that won't happen.)

 

Or, maybe co-ed troops could be a way to revitalize the patrol method...within a troop, have single-sex patrols.  They're going to be camping 300' apart, right?

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I wonder if this would even be a question if we ditched the Advancement method.  Seems like most of the arguments are about the ability to get Eagle...not having to deal with the helicopter parents that see advancement as a aim would make my life a lot easier. (Yes, I know that won't happen.)

 

Or, maybe co-ed troops could be a way to revitalize the patrol method...within a troop, have single-sex patrols.  They're going to be camping 300' apart, right?

 

What?  Advancement is a method of Scouting?  I thought ti was THE goal of Scouting.  Silly me!

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.This movement is about taking down religious, male, conservative institutions.

 

Personally it doesn’t matter to me whether BSA stays single sex or goes coed. I don’t see keeping things like BSA and GSUSA as equal but separate as any kind of moral issue. Just a case if they chose to they do and if they don’t they don’t.

 

I do think though that it’s worth pausing for thought about why women constantly want in on male only organisations and it doesn’t happen the other way around.

 

Here’s a few key dates for you in the UK. I don’t know what the equivalents are in the USA but you might want to look them up.

 

1918       Women over 30 first allowed to vote (in the life time of all my grandparents)

1928       All women allowed to vote

1929       First woman government minister

1970       Women get equal pay (in the life time and indeed working life time of my parents. It was legal to pay my mum less than my dad had they done the same job)

1971       Women allowed to play football (soccer)

1979       First woman Prime Minister

1991       Marital rape criminalised (in my life time it was legal for a man to rape his wife. Frankly I shudder in shame that it took till the 90s for my country to criminalise this)

1994       Anglican church ordains first women priests

2012       Women given equal standing in line to the throne. If having an hereditary head of state wasn’t archaic enough we actually stopped women becoming head of state if they had a younger brother.

2015       First women Bishops

2015       First woman achieves a “stared†rank in the military (Brigadier/Commodore/Air Commodore) Even now women can’t join the infantry, Royal Armoured Corps, any airborne unit or the RAF regiment.

 

Those are just the headlines. There are dozens more things that could go in that women have had to fight for decades and even centuries for.

 

It’s not a case of being against men or conservatives or religion. I don’t want to speak for women but the list above may give you an idea of what it is all about.

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Or license "Eagle Scout" and other BSA trademarks, copyrights etc... to allow GSA to use them in their own program if they so wish.

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I'm still looking for proof of denied opportunity.

 

Yes, GS/USA has set itself up so that hiking and camping monthly is not a priority. So, young women feel like they are being denied the opportunity to do that. They tell me as much. But, the vast majority aren't about to change anything.

 

Careers? The only reason so many Eagles are noted for their distinguished achievements as adults is because of good marketing for 100+ years. If an award has only been available for 40 years, even the best marketing will not be able to associate it with half of today's distinguished women.

 

NOW-NYC cites disparity due to scholarships awarded to Eagles, implying that fewer scholarships are forthcoming to Gold Awardees or girls in general. I'm not feeling it. My daughter raked in more scholarship $'s than my boys.

 

The young lady in question wants opportunities. Well, look at her green shirt. I have a little book that lists the very distinguished awards that can be earned with it. Even if her petition fails, she has several great paths to success ahead of her. I look forward to seeing her as an officer in the Northeast Region.

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Cambridgeskip makes a good historical note regarding women and our society.  What is often lost in these discussions is the fact that there have always been females involved in successful cultures.  Anthropologists have verified that women were often the backbone of earlier civilizations, possibly because of the special connection of mother and child, no matter the gender.  A number of our Native American cultures have traditions of matriarchal control that silently was the glue that held them together.  We all know of women, and girls as well, that far exceed the men and boys in almost all areas of achievement.  

 

So, why can't we, as a theoretically honest organization, simply focus on the larger picture and work for the youth, and in extension a better society, with flexibility that fits the each unique local group as needed and wanted "by them"?  

 

But I am old; what do I know?

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Or license "Eagle Scout" and other BSA trademarks, copyrights etc... to allow GSA to use them in their own program if they so wish.

 

At least I got a smile out of that one.  I am fairly certain that the GSUSA would not "so wish".

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