The Bull's Eye

PRO: Too cemented in tradition

The Boy Scouts of America are trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent. On the other hand, the Girl Scouts of the United States of America sell delicious chocolate covered cookies every year from January to April.

Since the beginning of the 20th Century,  the BSA has been teaching teenage boys how to be capable and self reliant, paving the way for a new generations of leaders built on a strong moral code and responsibility.

Starting in 2018, the program is opening itself up to allow girls to join, and have the same opportunity of obtaining the prestigious rank of Eagle Scout.

This decision has faced backlash, and much of it is based on a closed minded traditionalist take on the program that including girls into the program takes away from the original purpose of raising a group of capable young men.

Outlets such as Fox News argue that boys and girls are fundamentally different, and that a Girl Scout program already exists. They advocate that keeping the groups exclusive further contributes to having a safe environment where kids can grow into their potential.

This “separate but equal” mindset does not take into account years of sexism and misogyny that already exists in our present society. We live in a society. In an ideal world, the GSUSA would hold as much prestige as its male counterpart, and the programs would parallel one another, paving the way for a new generation of capable and responsible leaders, regardless of gender.

Unfortunately, the reality of the world we live in deems that even a complete reformation of the Girl Scout program would still fall short to the opportunities offered by the BSA.

For decades, the title of Eagle Scout has garnered respect and admiration–something even the highest ranking Girl Scout cannot compare with. While the GSUSA offer practical skills, the program does not compare to the BSA, and is mostly well known for their yearly sale of cookies.

With the GSA falling short of giving young girls in America a chance to make a name for themselves, it is understandable that the BSA has opened up their program.

Those who prioritize the traditionalist idea of a gender-exclusive troop over equality must realize the importance in providing a chance for girls to have access to the same opportunities as boys from a young age.

This integration is allowing a new generation of young girls to finally garner respect in one of the most distinguished programs in America.

Self sufficiency, responsibility and a strong moral code are not principles exclusive to the male gender, and young girls in America should be allowed to have the same opportunities as boys to achieve respected titles and rankings in the largest scouting program in the country.

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