Dan OCanna (ocanna@ALPHA.CAER.UKY.EDU)
Wed, 21 Feb 1996 10:11:10 EST
************* An apology to those on the list *************
Sorry about the previous posting. I had failed to save the
text file I'd punched in MS-Word with line breaks, and, also
failed to test it properly before sending it out. Two
boo-boos on my part.
Now back to the intended program
In honor of BP's birthday I'd like to share the following
with the list. It was originally published in the News &
Observer in Raleigh, North Carolina February 11, 1995. By
the time it reached me and I'd obtained permission to
reprint it here some time had passed so I decided to wait
'till now to send it to you.
The folks at the N&O were very helpful but quite particular
in their requirements before granting permission to reprint.
Should you wish to reuse this article please obtain written
The News & Observer / Reprint Permissions
215 S. McDowell St.
Raleigh, NC 27602
(919) 836-2814 (fax)
I handled the entire transaction by E-mail by contacting the
author at: email@example.com
The reprint request should include the following:
Title and writer
Number of reprints to be made
A contact name and phone number
Now, one more bit of administrivia to keep the legal types
happy: "Reprinted with permission from the News & Observer
of Raleigh, North Carolina". Whew!
Scout's Values Endure
By: Dennis Rogers
Substance abusers have a variety of 12-step programs to
deal with their problems. How about a 12-step program for
kids trying to cope with a world they neither created nor
I suggest this one: "A Scout is trustworthy, loyal,
helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful,
thrifty, brave, clean and reverent."
It is easy to think this younger generation is going to
hell. Two boys are charged with killing a North Raleigh
couple during a robbery. A 14-year-old boy assaults and
attempts to rape a Fuquay-Varina woman while her baby
screams in fear. A teen puts a gun to the head of a man and
pulls the trigger, killing him on the spot. This week, two
truants set fire to a Durham house, causing thousands of
dollars damage and killing a kitten.
Civilization is doomed, you say?
Well, no, not yet.
The punks in the headlines come from all parts of the
community but they have one thing in common: None of the
them are Scouts. Meanwhile, more that 16,000 members of the
Occoneechee Council of the Boys Scouts of America have
quietly gone about the business of being normal kids, having
fun, doing their well-known good deeds (a few days ago,
three Durham Scouts rescued a woman and her baby from a
wrecked car), making their schools and communities stronger
and living up to the standards set 85 years ago when
Scouting came to America.
This week Scouting celebrates its 85th birthday, 85
years of pledging allegiance to the flag, 85 years of
believing in god and country, 85 years of dedication to
traditional values, 85 years of believing every word of the
Scout Oath: "On my honor I will do my best to do my duty to
God and my country and to obey the Scout Law; to keep myself
physically strong, mentally awake and morally straight."
Scouting has been blindsided in recent years by those
who would change it to fit their agenda, but Scouting has
remained true to its mission of building young men and women
of character and substance.
My respect and affection for Scouting comes from
personal experience. Those who think that kids have only
started getting in trouble lately have awfully short
memories because back in the '50s when I was a hard headed,
shirt tailed kid whose future was a toss-up, trouble was
easy to find.
The lure of the streets was strong but Troop 350 ,
sponsored by the Five Points Missionary Baptist Church, was
stronger. We were a bunch of boys from a hard knocks
neighborhood lead by two brothers, Billy and Bruce Poole.
They were not miracle workers, just a couple of neighborhood
guys who let us know they cared about us. It was not always
easy, particularly when the neighborhood toughs would make
fun of us in our uniforms, but the strength and affection we
got from that troop made it worth it.
Scouting never abandoned the values that America is
supposedly returning to these days. Scouts still proudly
proclaim a love of community, from neighborhood to nation.
They unlike their streetwise peers, are not ashamed to raise
their right hand and swear to uphold those values.
Not all Scouts are perfect. I wasn't. But what we
learned around smoky camp fires, in musty tents, in Scout
buildings and in ceremonies of pomp and pride got us through
hard times. Yes, we learned to tie knots and pitch tents
but we also learned that love of country, God, family and
friends and pride in doing the right thing is not something
to be ashamed of.
(Please note that the phrase "to help other people at all
times" was omitted from the Scout Oath in the original
Yours in the (continuing) spirit of Scouting,
Dan O'Canna [firstname.lastname@example.org] Lexington, KY
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City