If Not Even The Boy Scouts Can Celebrate Boys, They’re In Serious Trouble

Article here. Excerpt:

'Every other Monday evening, a chaotic scene erupts at our local Presbyterian church. Young boys of all ages dart around, happily calling to each other across the room, alternating between sprints, tackles, and boisterous discussion of the latest update from Minecraft or their favorite YouTube star.
As a mother and an assistant den leader, these bimonthly rituals have a place of sacred significance. I remember watching my older brother advance to Eagle Scout, admiring the practical skills, sense of greater responsibility, and strong self-motivation he developed. I eagerly waited for my son to come of scouting age, and relished watching him throw himself into the activities with reckless abandon.

In a world where masculinity is too often thought of as toxic and men disappear from the labor force,marriage, and self-sufficiency, scouting was our safe space, a place boys could be taught as boys, by men, on the importance of developing into strong leaders with outstanding moral character. I’ve watched the men who lead our troops sacrifice so much of their lives, hoping that their tireless work imparts some nuggets of wisdom to help these young men follow the right path.
The Boy Scouts of America’s  decision to begin allowing girls raises many questions for me. The first are practical. Despite the directive to allow separate dens at the Cub Scout level and forced separation at the Boy Scout level, it’s hard to imagine enough young girls joining Cub Scouts to fill a tiger troop on their own. The Boy Scouts have struggled with declining membership,experienced even by our local troop as we’ve increased recruitment efforts at local schools and community events. Recruiting a few girls across a wide age range seems more likely to yield mixed dens at the young ages, similar to my son’s Little League teams, which frequently had one or two girls in the mix.'

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I understand what she's getting at. But I was a scout. Scouts were not a "safe space" place as snowflakes now define it. It was in fact a place of challenges. We had to up our games. We had to learn, try new things, take a few risks (safe ones -- never saw a boy get challenged dangerously when I was in it), and give it our best.

If a kid got emotional (upset: crying, etc.) we let him be. Sure, a few assholes might make fun of him, but the rest of us'd tell them to STFU and leave the kid alone. By and large, the BSA was a "safe space" but not in the snowflake sense nor necessarily in the single-sex sense. It was a place where it was safe to push yourself, and get pushed a bit if you were being lazy or negligent. But that was part of the deal. Wear the uniform, stand and deliver. That was the drill.

The absence of girls was more about the absence of distraction. To expect boys to be undistracted by girls and vice versa is utterly unrealistic. That's why there's a GSA.

Methinks the BSA will regret this decision.

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