Re: Re: Eagle before 13?
John Pannell (PANNELLJ@DELPHI.COM)
Thu, 22 Sep 1994 20:05:40 -0400
hunteb <hunteb@SMTPGATE.LDS-AZ.LORAL.COM> writes:
>I have found that if a boy does not reach eagle by the end of 8th grade,
>9th tops, he tends not to acheive the rank unless motivated later in H.S.
>by other requirements, e.g. a scholarship application or excessive pressure
>from home and church.
He also states that there are many other activities available to youth in
the U.S. today than in the past. I suspect this is the same in other
nations as well.
I have seen this line of reasoning here and many other places and must
respond. Please do not be offended by what I write; it is not intended to
offend. It is blunt, and maybe abrasive, but not meant to offend.
What is wrong with some boys not getting Eagle??!? This writer and others,
IMO, seems to imply by not getting Eagle before 8th or 9th grade, hence
likely never getting it, some great disservice is being done.
The Eagle badge is given because the boy earned it. If for some reason, he
chooses to partake in other activities as he gets older and chooses to leave
Scouting, so be it. It is a loss to us and to him, but these things happen.
We must realize, that we cannot keep every kid until he makes Eagle. In
days past, it was said that only 1-2% of the boys entering Scouting ever
achieve Eagle. That meant we lost at least 49 out of 50 before they become
Eagles! I wonder if these percentages still hold today.
We should give our youth every opportunity to advance towards Eagle, but if
this means pinning an Eagle medal on an unqualified 12, 13, or 14 year old I
must vehemently object. Earning Eagle is a step he must take himself.
We all learned young that life if full of sacrifices; you can't do
everything you want. Quite often boys (and girls) are forced to choose
between Scouting and other activities. Sometimes they don't make the right
choice and sometimes the "right choice" for _them_ is not what we want.
This is life and a part of growing up. If a boy goes elsewhere before
earning Eagle, so be it.
Part of what makes the Eagle (and Gold) award special, is that so few are
able to make the sacrifices, and muster the dedication and perserverance
needed to earn them.
John E. Pannell
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City