October 6, 2013
By Dr. Dee Carter, LANDsds Sustainable Voice News
Youth – The Boy Scouts prepare young men for Adventure through its great outdoors experiences; for Service by providing opportunities to volunteer and work in their communities and for Leadership with their life skills merit badges, ranks and awards. The mission of BSA is to “prepare young people to make ethical and moral choices over their lifetimes…”
The Boy Scouts of America (BSA), have an oath which states:
“On my honor, I will do my best
To do my duty to God and my country and to obey the Scout Law;
To help other people at all times;
To keep myself physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight.”
There is a new movie that debuted this weekend in Richmond, VA: Troop 491: The Adventures of the Muddy Lions. It is based on a true story which follows the life of a young boy named Tristan whose mother enrolls him with the Boy Scouts to keep him off the streets. He is faced with peer pressure that often accompanies violence & drugs in the inner city. These haunting circumstances eventually lead him to a crossroad where he will have to choose between following the oath of the scouts or the code of the streets.
In the 2012 Annual Report, overall membership has slightly decreased. This is unfortunate; when you consider the quality programs the Boy Scouts have offered our young men (and women) for over 100 years. Perhaps this is due to a wider selection of youth & mentoring programs offered today and let’s hope it is not due to an empathetic perception of our young men. It is very important that we don’t lose faith in the potential of our youth, especially the young inner city boys from fatherless homes. These are the young men that fill our prisons, experience homelessness and have a suicide rate 5 times the average.
There is a Tristan in every block; a young man looking for direction, leadership and save fun. It is imperative we support reportable organizations like the Boy Scouts of America, who continue to shape the lives of our youth in a positive direction…creating men of honor. I encourage you to go see this movie if it is in your neighborhood. It is appropriate for the entire family (PG-13) and will promote positive dialogue in our communities and potentially ignite new enrollment with the Boy Scouts throughout all of our cities.