According to The Washington Times:
“The Boy Scouts of America, an organization with semi-military origins, has put out approved activities for its members, and water gun fights are strictly prohibited.”
Colorful plastic water-weaponry has taken a hit.
The Washington Times reports that the Boy Scouts of America’s Bryan Wendell explained the reasoning thusly in a blog post:
“Why the rule? A Scouter once told me this explanation I liked quite a bit: A Scout is kind. What part of pointing a firearm [simulated or otherwise] at someone is kind?”
Reading the above sentence makes me feel so many things: amusement, confusion, annoyance, pity, and general sadness. It makes me want to write a scathing rant about the wussifying of our culture. But I’m going to take the high-road, and try to put myself in Bryan Wendell’s shoes.
So, instead of ranting, I’m going to be helpful. I have several suggestions that I truly believe will make the Boy Scouts of America more inclusive, and above all, kind:
- Rename the organization. With a title like “Boy Scouts,” you’re being incredibly unkind to boys who may have transgender inclinations. How about “Individual Scouts?”–although that sends a message of exclusivity. Ok, how about “Joy Scouts?” I’m already getting the warm and fuzzies.
- Joy Scouts of “America?” That’s jingoistic and xenophobic–the height of unkindness. The word “America” must be expunged from the title because it instills in the Joy Scouts a feeling of superiority and exclusiveness, that you must be “American” to be a Joy Scout. How about Joy Scouts of Anywhere?
- No activities that involve athletics should be allowed. It’s unkind to the more shapely children to force them to try to keep up with the naturally athletically inclined children. All activities should involve sitting, or at most, short-distance walking (with frequent sitting breaks).
- Abolish all merit badges; they set up a class-system in which some children are perceived as superior based on skill sets that others may not grasp as easily. That’s unkind. Instead, reward everyone in the troop with equality badges–preferably in gray, so as not to exclude color blind Joy Scouts.
- In that same vein, the Order of the Arrow must be abolished as well. It creates a separatism and elitism, causing other Joys to feel left out. That is extremely unkind.
- The Scout oath needs to be changed immediately. The oath reads in part: “On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to God and my country…” God? I’m sorry, but that is outrageously unkind to those who may not be religious. Forcing children to say the G-word if they are not believers is abuse.
Those are merely six of many suggestions I have to improve the Joy Scouts of Anywhere. I’m releasing these suggestion into the public domain, so they may be used to create a more inclusive environment for the JSoA.