scouts-l Mail Archive for November of 1999: Scouting and Citizenship - at Question?
Donald R Izard (dizard@ACSU.BUFFALO.EDU
Mon Nov 15 1999 - 13:39:36 CST
I almost hesitate to ask since I have been personally
attacked - flamed - and my family heritage questioned
after my last question . . . But I stick by my postition
that "you can not offend me, unless I choose to be offened".
I come from a family - like some have noted - Like Lt Dan
of Forest Gump fame, that has had family die as the results
of wounds or illness in every war since 1812. We had a
the USS Izard (fletcher class) named for an ancestor,
and even Fort Izard in Florida - for the FIRST casualty
of the "Seminole wars".
ref : http://o-zone.starbanner.com/History/Izard816.html
Even a county in Arkansas - Izard county etc. When my
dad exlplained our family history - it was clear why
there are so few of us Izard's today.
But off to try to rearch for my question. I tried to gather
some historical references about WHY Lord Baden-Powell
started scouting. One of the reasons I was taught as
a young scout, was that Baden-Powell was gravly concerned
about the quality of young men in England - and thier
ability to fight in and survive during a war to defend
It comes to my mind - that we are reaching that same
point in the USA, today. Most militray branches are
unable to fill thier quota of Qualified individuals!
The last time I worked with a group of scouts for
Citizenship Merit madges, I asked how many plan to
consider military service - answer- NONE - zero. We are
reaching a point where fewer of our political leaders
are even veterans. However, the time for the need to be
prepared to defend our country is NOT past. We still
need to be able to defend our country. (please note
I do not want to debate weather or NOT we should be
getting envolved in places like Kosovo) - I want
to focus on DEFEND our country. We may still need
a strong and prepared military in the new milenium.
Schools don't really teach citizenship, and not much
fitness either. Scouting is one of the few places
where a young man can learn the skills he does need
to survive. My uncle in World War I - told me that
he was able to survive the war - because he was
a faster DRAW than the Germans. He credited his playing
COWBOY quick draw to help him survive the battle, only
then to later die from the illness he carried home.
I am troubled that there are those who are offended
by scouts learning skills that will help them to
survive - if they are one of the few that choose
to defend our country in the future.
So - finally to my question - what is citizenship?
As a US citizen, should we NOT "be preapred"
in every way - to defend our country? Should
young men (or women) today, not believe that they
have some obligation to serve our country?
I await the flames! I have on my asbestos
underware and HAT to match!!
Veteran, Eagle Scout, Eagle Dad, and I used to be a Owl, and staffer too
Currently serving scouting on a Unit committee and 3 units as Comissioner