A case for the boy scouts. Sincerely, a Girl Scout

Story by Jordan Mooney, Illustration Editor

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The rivalry between the Girl Scouts and the Boy Scouts is usually a friendly feud that has gone on since they began co-existing. Now, for the first time in a century, the scouts have both dropped their playful back-and-forth and gone into a legal battle, just one year after the Boy Scouts announced they would allow admittance of young girls into their troops. In light of this, the Boy Scouts sought to change their name to a more neutral “Scouts,” which reflected on their new desire to include everyone. Girl Scouts of America claim that by doing this, the Boy Scouts will “erode its core brand identity,” as stated in the complaint filed in November in Manhattan federal court. The Girl Scouts also expressed fears of the spread of misinformation, as many have wrongfully come to the conclusion that the two companies have merged.

This year will mark my tenth as a member of the Girl Scouts of America, and even so, I don’t approve of this lawsuit. We have a code of honor called the Girl Scout Promise, the first two lines of which are: “I will do my best to be honest and fair.” Although, with this legal case, I find it hard to see an angle where the Girl Scouts are being very fair. For example, some communities simply do not have a tradition of Girl Scouts or do not know how to start a troop. Kids who are looking for recreation might be more comfortable if their friends or family were a part of Boy Scout first. It took me six months before I settled with my troop in second grade because it’s hard to join if you don’t know what you’re looking for. By making themselves more accessible through trade and through name, the Boy Scouts are doing a great thing by giving these kids opportunities to learn the same useful trades they would in Girl Scouts. Retaliating this with legal action on the Girl Scout’s part is unnecessary overkill.

The Girl Scouts of America do not exemplify their own values of honor, fairness, and respecting others in this petty dispute. I don’t see why ten year olds can follow this code when CEOs cannot. The Girl Scouts claim the Boy Scouts should not have monopoly on the word “scout,” but they are trying to own it themselves by claiming that this somehow infringes on their “intellectual property.” Additionally, no one is pressuring the Girl Scouts to include boys into their programs, despite claims of supposed unfairness aimed at the Boy Scouts. While I realize that Girl Scout fears a loss of earnings, it’s not as if the Boy Scouts are selling cookies outside of Publix right now.

On behalf of all Girl Scouts, I extend my hand to any kind of scout willing to make a world a better place. After all, new friends are gold.

Sincerely, a Girl Scout.

 

mooney@pawprint.com

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