scouts-l Mail Archive for August of 2000: votes, voting and citizenship
Rik Bergethon (rberg@RMI.NET
Thu Aug 24 2000 - 06:15:59 CDT
Ah, election time. Each fall we worked on one of the Citizenship merit
badges, and I really tried to do Nation around the federal election
time. We would digress from the book occasionally and I would ask the
boys to go home, ask their parents if they plan to vote, (not who for,
but vote: yes or no) and why or why not. I knew what answers I would get
back (about half weren't going to vote) and then put on a demonstration
to what happens when people don't vote. Take ten scouts and divide then
into two groups of five; one voting group and one non-voting group. Take
another scout and you and he will "run" for SPL, and campaign for about
two minutes each. You should run on the platform of vote for me and I
will give you free ice cream every meeting. Have the five voting scouts
elect a new SPL (you) then change your policy about how you would run
the troop (OK, I lied, no free ice cream tonight if you vote for me).
You will have three scouts who voted for you upset, and then ask the
five who didn't get to vote at all how they feel now; now that they
didn't vote for you or against you, but are affected by the outcome. Ask
them how they would have voted, if they had voted.
One scout reported back a few weeks later that he had changed his
parents' minds about voting. He was pretty proud.