scouts-l Mail Archive for June of 2000: Re: What about men as Girl Scout leaders?
Peter Farnham (pfarnham@ASBMB.FASEB.ORG
Fri Jun 16 2000 - 09:48:11 CDT
Donna and all,
My daughter is in a girl scout troop with a male primary leader, and my
wife as co-leader. Gary is a great guy--a former Navy SEAL, he takes the
girls rock-climbing, white-water rafting, etc. Spends a lot of time
finding interesting, challenging and fun things for them to do. Is also
involved at the service unit level, and has arranged service unit camporees
at the Naval Academy, the Philadelphia zoo, etc. His challenging and
energetic program is directly responsible for my daughter's continuing
involvement in girl scouts, and also for the return of several other girls
who had dropped out but came back in when they heard what fun things the
unit was doing!
A fine scout leader, period, regardless of his gender--as are the vast
majority of female scouters I've met in BSA. Women were involved in a
number of key positions in our troop from the git-go of my tenure as
scoutmaster, and have continued to be now that I have stepped down. ASM,
committee member, treasurer, advancement chair, newsletter adviser, summer
camp leader--all these positions have been ably filled by women in my unit
over the past five years.
While we have never had a female candidate for SM in the unit that I am
aware of, I would like to think that if such a candidate emerged, we'd
judge her qualifications for the job the same way we'd judge a man's and
not let gender enter into it. And, in my Wood Badge course in 1996, there
was at least one woman who was serving as SM of a local unit. Haven't
heard that the scouts in her unit are suffering any...
I do not have any fundamental problem with leaders of different genders
serving in GSUSA or BSA--my sole concern about any leader regardless of
gender is his or her dedication to the ideals of scouting.