Buddy Givens (Scouter280@AOL.COM)
Wed, 9 Oct 1996 10:15:54 -0400
Over the past few days, you may have seen a television commercial featuring a
young man who, according to the commercial, received some assistance on his
Eagle project from Wal-Mart. There are boys in uniform appearing in the
commercial. I don t know if these boys are real Scouts or actors, but the
impression is definitely that this is a real situation.
Well, one of the members of our Troop saw the commercial, and, since he is
working on his Eagle project, he promptly donned his uniform and went to the
closest Wal-Mart with his mother. They spoke to the manager and asked for
assistance for the project (he needs some PVC pipe and related accessories).
The manager is reported to have said something like We don t do that.
That s only for television.
I see a couple of problems here. One is the commercialism with which BSA
members are apparently involved, which is a clear violation of policy. I
would ask if Wal-Mart has permission to use BSA uniforms and insignia in the
ad, which I doubt. Second, if this is really only for television , it would
seem that Wal-Mart could be accused of false and misleading advertising.
I have no doubt that someone in the National Office will be looking into
this, but some of you might also contact the Wal-Mart stores in your area to
see how they would react to a request for assistance. This could prove to be
SM, Troop 280, Longhorn Council
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City