Re: Boy - Girl Talk
William H. Sills (email@example.com)
Thu, 26 Jun 1997 22:18:51 -0500
Denise Ramsburg Stanley wrote:
> Bill Sills wrote:
> > The G.O.L.D Award program would appear to be the key to having girls
> > "catch up" to boys getting their EAGLE in ships. Then, both genders can
> > work toward Quartermaster. What do you all think?
> Bill, Thank you for the suggestion. I think you also suggested this at
> Seabadge in March, and I have been investigating it. This is the answer
> I get from people who have been involved in boy scouting; and on the
> surface it makes sense. The problem is that the G.O.L.D. award isn't
> the same as Eagle, and I have been told repeated by boy scouters with
> whom I have talked that the girl scout program doesn't do the same types
> of things as the boy scout program. While certainly the leadership
> skills are covered, the seamanship skills, such as knot tying, and
> signaling and other skills necessary to advance in rank in Sea Exploring
> are not. The girl scout program simply doesn't blend as seamlessly into
> the Sea Exploring program as the Boy Scouting program does.
> What's more, at least in our area, girls do not tend to stay with the
> girl scouting program as long as boys tend to stick with boy scouting.
> Indeed, most of the adolescent girls I have known abandoned girl scouts
> many years ago. At one time our ship was almost all girls, but they
> have come from local schools and the community, not girl scouting. Once
> they are in the ship, they have no interest whatsoever in joining a girl
> scout program--and it is really too late anyway.
> At this time, we are working on recruiting a very enterprising young
> lady who is working on her G.O.L.D., but she is the first girl scout
> that has expressed an interest since I have been involved in Columbia
> Ranger. We have tried with other girl scouts, but they have not shown
> much interest in the program. (Indeed, a sister of one of our Eagles,
> who is working on her G.O.L.D. openly dislikes the program.) If we are
> successful in recruiting this girl scout, we can test whether the skills
> and experiences she has learned in girl scouting transfer as easily as
> those of the boy scouts.
> But that still leaves the problem that most of the girls have not come
> from the girl scouting program and are not likely to get G.O.L.D. or the
> experiences that it exemplifies. We can't ask them to go back to girl
> scouts. We have to accept them as they are and find other ways to help
> them get quickly to an even playing field with the boys.
> At one time, I thought it unfair that boys could get Eagle Awards in Sea
> Exploring but girls could not. I am still reserving judgment on that,
> because I don't like to see limited exploring resources being expended
> on programs for which only the boys are elligible. We have had two
> Eagles recently, and the time it takes for all of the program planning,
> monitoring, board of review, skipper's conference, and Eagle ceremony,
> etc. was considerable. I am proud of our Eagles' achievements, and the
> ceremonies on the land ship have been elegant and do present a positive
> image of sea exploring and promote the sea exploring program.
> Nevertheless, I have qualms about excluding the girls from an award made
> in what is supposed to be a co-educational program.
> Telling the girls to go get a girl scouting award is not the answer as
> explained above; but if we are going to tell the girls to go to girl
> scouts and get a G.O.L.D. award, then we should also tell the boys to
> get their Eagles in boy scouts, not exploring.
> Exploring is a co-educational program, so the commitment of its
> resources should reflect that co-educational component. Girls and boys
> should be treated equally. What we have instead is a "boys club" into
> which girls can enter after reaching a certain age but in which they
> have lesser privileges by virtue of their late entry into the "club."
> I realize that I am probably attacking some sacred cows, and despite how
> this sounds I am not a person who generally gets on the women's rights
> bandwagon. I'll step down from my soapbox now and let someone have a
> crack at me, but do see my response to Kristen to get a better flavor
> for why I hold these opinions.
> Denise Ramsburg Stanley, Mate
> S.E.S. Columbia Ranger
> Columbia, Maryland
I'm sorry that I wasn't clear about the G.O.L.D. Award. I didn't
mean the GSUSA Silver and Gold (formerly Gold Eaglet) Awards, I meant
the NEW stand-alone BSA replacement of the EXPLORER ACHIEVEMENT AWARD.
That has BSA meaning, is an impressive Award and requires a project and
achievements in the EXPLORING AREAS.
Sometimes, when you are "getting on in years", you make
assumptions that really don't make much sense upon reflection. I have to
be careful because I was a Cub Scout in 1944 and was an Air Scout ACE.
That biography certainly qualifies me as a "Veteran Scouter" with all
the baggage, foibles and apocryphal stories that implies. <VBG>
Anyway, I'm sorry to have been so ontuse. :-)