Calling "Boys" "boys"
(no name) ((no email))
Sun, 14 Jul 1996 02:39:32 -0500
Ron Fox brought up a interesting line when we were talking
about the BSA's National Web site:
>>>>>No recognition that few males over the age of
>>>>>about 12 care to be referred to as a "boy".
>>>No one responded to this.
>>I started to, but I turned around. I'll have to response to this
>>in a future posting.
To which Ron responded:
>I really do think this is something to deal with.
This is that posting.
The biggest problem with the "boy" thing, Ron, is that we went through this
and for the most part, it didn't matter. Boys
did not mind, for the most part, being called "Boys". We had a period when
we dropped the "Boy" in Boy Scouting and simply called everyone "Scouts",
which is why even today, we
find it hard to call Boy Scouts "Boy Scouts". It's "Scouts".
They did a great job marketing and promoting it.
Some background: Under the "Improved Scouting Program" in
1971, ALL of the BSA's literature, indeed everything connected to how we
communicated our programs, would no longer include the word "Boy" in it.
Why?? Many racial
group members regarded the word "boy" as somewhat offensive in nature, and
the BSA was in the middle of trying to attract as many Black, Latino and
Indian boys to our programs as we can handle.
So we became known also as "Scouting/USA" and our letterhead and program
only added "Boy Scouts of America" in smaller lettering than the new logo
which identified us to the world.
The announcement was hailed as a watershed in youth programs. It was
followed by the Girl Scouts of the USA's new look and name...and lots of
confusions about whether the two
national programs were now one.
It became SO frustrating, that many Councils soon abandoned the
"communicative name" and went back to calling itself a Council of the Boy
Scouts of America. Not only that, but monies that before went to the BSA
now were stopped because distributing agencies and others were confused as to
whether to give the money to this "Scouting/USA" outfit.
The BSA went back in 1976 to calling itself once again, the Boy Scouts of
America and to basically nationally shelve the
"Scouting/USA" stuff. There is STILL a lot of it out there, and if you
look closely, you will still see vestiges of the old program still there....
But it was too confusing, because we also have "Girl Scouts"
and other "Scouts". Never mind that "we're the only ones thats supposed to
have the "Scout" word.
So, we went back to calling them what they liked to be called...
Boy Scouts. Nobody complained when we went back, and we
even GAINED new membership over the period.
But this is now the 90s and somehow we've come full-circle again on this
issue of calling Boy Scouts "boys". What do you think? Was the BSA on the
right track when they dropped the "Boy" from "Boy Scout"?? Was the timing off?
Or should we have had stuck to our guns as we're doing now
with the 3G issues and demanded that we continue to call our
program "Boy Scouts of America" to the public and our members in our junior
program "Boy Scouts"?
(MAJ) Mike L. Walton (Settummanque, the blackeagle) (
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