Making Boy Scouting a political football — shame on those outlets


When President Barack Obama met with a group of outstanding Boy Scouts in the Oval Office a few weeks ago to discuss policies affecting Scouting, and especially policies affecting children, teen agers and young adults in the U.S., very few conservative sites thought it important to cover.  Let’s be more precise:  No conservative Obama critics, nor much of anyone else, bothered to cover it.  I’d love to see links even of local media in the Scouts’ hometowns that printed a story or photo.

To the credit of the White House, neither did the press promote the meeting as a political point.  Scouting prefers not to be a political football, and Scouting policy asks that Scouts avoid even looking like politicking while in uniform. (Scouts are encouraged to participate in the political process, including through the three citizenship merit badges, which encourage Scouts to communicate their concerns about policy to elected representatives, while working for the merit badge and in the future as participating citizens.)

2010 is a grand year for Scouting.  It’s the centennial of Scouting’s coming to the United States.  There’s a special Scout Jamboree, being held at Fort A. P. Hill in Virginia (the last time the Jamboree will be held on federal property — that’s another story for another time).   It’s always fun when presidents come to the Jamboree and speak, but it’s not always possible.

But today, news comes that President Obama will send a video speech to the Scouts at the Jamboree, as has been done sometimes in the past.  Many of us are disappointed that President Obama will not appear in person; but some of us who have experience scheduling such things know that elected officials cannot make every appearance they would like to.  Presidential schedules in the modern world are particularly difficult; for an appearance at Fort A. P. Hill security must be imposed (even on a Scouting event), aircraft landing sites need to be arranged and secured . . . dealing with more than 30,000 Scouts becomes an onerous task.

Still, we’re disappointed.

Adding to that disappointment, comes now a group of harpy Obama critics, no friends of Scouting that I can determine, but anxious to claim this scheduling decision as some sort of snub to Scouting, and to the American flag.

Media Matters has the facts, and puts the scheduling stuff into perspective, “Overhyped conservative nonsense of the Day:  Obama hates the Boy Scouts.”  UpdateBlue Wave News has it in perspectiveWonkette’s satire, unfortunately, goes awry, but her heart and brain are in the right places.

The snub is by those critics who attempt to turn Scouting into a political football.  The insults are all from them.

Shame on them, collectively and individually:

Update: We’re going to have to add on a wing to accommodate the Wall of Shame:

Hmmmm.

I’ll wager none of those authors bothers to volunteer for Scouting.  I’d be surprised (and disappointed) to discover any were Scouts.  Scouting wouldn’t revoke their citizenship merit badges, but they’ve forgotten them, if they ever earned them.

Scouting faces severe hurdles these days, some of them I would say were placed by poobahs at the top of Scouting; these guys listed above are not helping.

Here are some tests to see which of these blogs and pundit outlets is friendly to Scouting:  Which of them covered the award, this morning of the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award to Tuskegee Airman Charles McGee?  Which of them covered the dedication of the U.S. Postal Service’s stamp honoring the Scouting Centennial, today?  As of this moment, I can find no media coverage of these things at all, even by local media.

Why do these pundits cover Scouting only when it gives them a chance to make an unfair shot at a politician they don’t like?  Seriously, who is doing disservice to Scouting, and the nation?

Good news about Scouting’s 100th Year, and the Jamboree:

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102 Responses to Making Boy Scouting a political football — shame on those outlets

  1. sherminator505 says:

    As a Scouter, I don’t like to see people make the BSA look bad. I feel the same way about the GSUSA, even though I have never been involved with that organization (save the purchase of Thin Mints, etc.). Still, it strikes me that both of these organizations have drifted towards their respective poles to the point that they bring a lot of these bad vibes upon themselves. In my view, both organizations need to pull themselves back to the “kindred values” that all Americans share rather than continue to marginalize themselves.

    Like

  2. J,

    I credited Ed with answering my questions.

    As for Wallis, he isolated a bullet point into its own little encapsulated silo, and took the trouble to write “I am just going to say it. There is something wrong with a political movement like the Tea Party which is almost all white.” The meaning is clear: Just because there are other things Wallis has noticed that he doesn’t like, doesn’t mean anything further is required to make the movement “wrong.” Nothing else is. It is wrong just because it’s got too many white people. It stands alone as a self-sustaining, self-sufficient, independent bullet point, fifth of five.

    Let’s not forget who Jim Wallis is. Obama’s previous “spiritual mentor” had to be tossed under the bus because he was caught on tape being a bigoted asshole. It put Obama’s campaign in perhaps its only serious trouble that year. Obama distracted the nation with yet another wonderful speech, which was so wonderful nobody can recall any notable line from it…He called for a national-dialogue-on-race. Which was insincere from the get-go. No national dialogue ensued. He just wanted votes and He got them…but he needed another spiritual mentor to snooker the democrats who happen to believe in Christ.

    Back in those days, it was said by Obama’s critics that if elected, He’d use His race to bulldoze the opposition, to summarily declare victory in any argument, become a virtual dictator just by declaring any & all opponents racists. This was some potent stuff, not often said out in the open. Since this is precisely what has been taking place, maybe it should have been talked about more openly. That’s probably the “national dialogue on race” we really needed to have.

    As for me, no. If Obama was a white communist instead of a black one, I still wouldn’t be too crazy about Him. I meet several new Obama-disliking friends every single weekend, that’s when I get to wear my anti-Obama tee shirts. I get more and more smiles and thumbs-up about it every single month.

    But I have yet to meet a single person who wants to make an issue out of His race. You’d have to talk to Jim Wallis to find out why we’re even discussing it. But the answer is pretty obvious to anyone who thinks on it for a minute: It’s Obama’s way of getting the last word. Spend money until the dollar is crazy weak, spend money some more, put government in charge of business, and then act like the only reason anyone would oppose this is they don’t like the color of your skin.

    Me, I happen to agree with a certain other wise man named Morgan.

    As far as your questions, I find them off-topic and disingenuous. They put me on the defensive, and I have nothing to defend. The people who have something to defend are the Tea Party infiltrators who are responsible for carrying around those signs you’re talking about.

    I don’t mean to be unfriendly about it, but I’ve spent my entire adult life watching the country lose its priorities because when people are baited with these accusatory “when did you stop beating your wife” questions, they make the mistake of starting to answer them. This puts the wrong side on the defensive, and results in bad things. Like Obama getting elected. And so I’m calling a stop to the whole absurd practice.

    Let’s put YOU on the defensive. What did you do to make sure these “tea party people” carrying these signs were genuine? Have you ever infiltrated a tea party?

    Like

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