Sunday, May 2, 2010

On my honor...

...I will try:
To play Wii and watch TV,
To beat my best score at all times,
and live by Kardashian law.

OK, so that's not how the Girl Scout Promise goes, or the Boy Scouts' for that matter, but it seems like it's heading in that direction.

I read in today's paper about a new badge offered to younger Cub Scouts where they can earn a merit badge by playing video games. Excuse me? In the same article, they also mentioned a new badge for Girl Scouts meant to improve TV viewing habits. The project name? [Wait for it...] The Couch Potato Interest Project.

Wow, scouting sure has changed since I was a kid.

Had we these kind of badges back then, I would have said sayonara to all the camp-outs and jungle breakfasts with bug juice; visiting the elderly at nursing homes; reading all those books; hiking; participating in those darn cookie sales; writing to pen pals and whatever other activity we were doing. Nah - I would have just stayed home and watched all the TV I could and said I did my project. Badge, please.

From what I gather, the BSA added the video game badge to attract more members in a world gone mad with gamers and, well, couch potatoes. The GSA added their badge to allow all girls to earn a badge, and to also (in a clouded kind of way) educate young girls about quality TV viewing and analysis. I'm thinking the girls will end up exclaiming WWHMD ("What would Heidi Montag Do?") And the video gaming boys? Will it be a coincidence in a few years' time if we find ourselves with unruly, overweight teens with violent tendencies?

I would like to think the Scouts, boy or girl, created these badges with good intentions and will still maintain the integrity of the whole purpose of scouting - to enjoy the outdoors, to contribute to society and to develop into a decent human being. Or maybe that's just too 20th century.


Sarah said...

Maybe I'm being negative, but to me, this seems like the Scouts' effort to seem "current" - at the expense of some of their core values. I was never a Scout, but I'm disappointed by this.

Christine said...

I totally agree, Sarah. These new changes really knock down the integrity of the organizations. It's really a shame.

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