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Why I want my daughter to be a Girl Scout

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Reel Mama: Why I want my daughter to be a Girl Scout

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Why I want my daughter to be a Girl Scout

I’m not one to brag, but I’ve always been extremely proud of my Girl Scout Gold Award.  The equivalent to the Eagle Scout Award for Boy Scouts, it is the organization’s highest award.  For my Gold Award, I organized a benefit concert for the Humane Society.  I hired the bands, secured the location, advertised, and in the end raised almost $500 for a cause I cared deeply about and still do.  Through that experience I learned about philanthropy and gained professional and organizational skills that I’ve carried with me my entire life.  
Now I’m a mom, and as a lifetime member of the Girl Scouts, I can’t wait for my daughter to gain life lessons as a Girl Scout, and I can’t wait to become a troop leader to mentor girls and help them benefit from the organization as much as I did.
That’s why I’m deeply saddened over how the Girl Scouts has become a political battleground, and people feel they need to choose sides based on the Girl Scout’s policy to accept transgender children in certain circumstances.  Just as the Boy Scouts have become mired in politics, and it has wreaked havoc on the organization, now the Girl Scouts has become a hotbed of divisive politics.  Those who agree with the Girl Scout’s policy have called for supporters to buy Girl Scout cookies in bulk, while those who disagree with it have gone as far as disbanding their troops, and in that case the ones who lose out are the girls.
The debate revolves around a Colorado troop that has decided to admit a 7-year-old boy who identifies as a girl.  The Girl Scouts has stated that they will admit transgendered children on a case-by-case basis.  A Girl Scout named Taylor, reportedly with the support of an organization called The Honest Girl Scouts, created a video to protest the Girl Scout’s decision and policy, arguing that the admission of the boy threatens her safety and that of her peers.  Perhaps one of the concerns is how certain situations might be handled if a transgender child is present, such as camping trips.  My argument, based on personal experience and observation, is that many Girl Scout troops, especially the urban ones, are moving away from camping trips and focusing more on professional development.  The troops in question can choose activities where all the children can feel comfortable, and no one will feel excluded, such as Girl Scout cookie drives, arts and crafts activities, organizing community benefits, and more.  
If a parent has an issue with this policy, I would argue that it comes up so rarely, that it’s hardly worth depriving your daughter of the Girl Scout experience over it.  Certainly it’s a heartbreak, and a real loss for the girls, if a troop is disbanded over it.  On top of that, at the heart of the issue is really one of tolerance.  In today’s society where bullying and cruelty in school are such an issue, the policy is really at the heart of what the Girl Scouts stands for: teaching kindness and acceptance.  Consider the difficult struggle of the parents of the transgender child.  Doubtlessly out of unconditional love for their child, these parents have allowed their child to identify himself as a girl.  Consider the bullying that this child possibly endures, and that the troop may be the one place where she feels accepted.  This 7-year-old child is a threat to no one, and children like her are often hurting inside, frustrated, and confused.  
If a Christian value system is used as an argument for disbanding a troop because of the Girl Scout’s policy, consider that Christ himself made it his personal mission in life to accept society’s most outcast.  He healed these people and showed them the milk of human kindness.  He made them his own, and I think he identified the most with them.  
If you have a problem with the Girl Scout’s policy, consider the incredible benefits that the Girl Scouts can provide for your daughter that will last a lifetime.  This organization will ennoble her heart, teach her incredible values and skills, allow her to form friendships and explore her interests, so that she can become all that she can be.  I know that all I learned through my wonderful experience with this organization helped me to be a better friend, daughter, wife, sister, mother, and human being.  No girl should miss out!  

I welcome your comments and questions below.


At January 19, 2012 at 9:54 AM , Blogger Rachel Rowell said...

I never got to be a girl scout but always wanted to be one when I was younger. Situations didn't allow though. My girls will defiantly be in it if I ever have a girl :). Popping back over from the Alexa hop and going over to leave you a review.


At January 19, 2012 at 9:58 AM , Blogger Rachel Rowell said...

Do you mind sending me the link to the Alexa page you would like reviewed? I see multiple sites and I'm not sure which to review,



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