Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Future Jack Boots of America

I was a Girl Scout as a kid and I led a Brownie troop as an adult. We learned how to survive in the woods and sang cheery songs around the campfire. Granted the Explorers, a co-ed program afilliated with the Boy Scouts, has always had a different focus but their latest training program is disturbing.
The training, which leaders say is not intended to be applied outside the simulated Explorer setting, can involve chasing down illegal border crossers as well as more dangerous situations that include facing down terrorists and taking out “active shooters,” like those who bring gunfire and death to college campuses. In a simulation here of a raid on a marijuana field, several Explorers were instructed on how to quiet an obstreperous lookout.

“Put him on his face and put a knee in his back,” a Border Patrol agent explained. “I guarantee that he’ll shut up.”
The program is open to 14-21 year olds, but the leaders take them at 13. Tell me not one 13 year old is going to try this shit at home. And the whole fight the enemy mentality seems to me to go against the spirit of Scouting. What ever happened to civic projects? Instead they're creating a culture of violence.
Cathy Noriego, also 16, said she was attracted by the guns. The group uses compressed-air guns — known as airsoft guns, which fire tiny plastic pellets — in the training exercises, and sometimes they shoot real guns on a closed range.

“I like shooting them,” Cathy said. “I like the sound they make. It gets me excited.”
An unfortunate quote considering the program's past history of sexual abuse by some counselors. This whole program strikes me as so many shades of wrong. Appalling.

[More posts daily at The Detroit News]

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Blogger Cosa Nostradamus said...

The Boy Scouts were the model for the Hitler Youth and the Soviet Pioneers. But this is more like what you see Al Qaeda doing with kids. And it's all directed at dubious domestic "threats" in the right-wing paranoid mind.

Be careful where you wear your turbans, folks.

8:40:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

The turban thing really disturbed me. Lots of non terrorists wear turbans and the chances that an actual terrorist would wear one if they were going to blow something up seems rather small to me.

11:04:00 PM  
Blogger Cosa Nostradamus said...

My Mom used to wear a towel as a turban when she came out of the shower.

Sikhs & Hindu's, millions of innocent Muslims & Bahais, and even some Christians & Buddhists wear turbans, all over the world. It's prob'ly the most widely worn headgear. Christ wore one, even at softball games.

I'm a lot more worried about guys in pointy-headed sheets. And teaching kids to be narcs. And vigilantes. They're more likely to BE the nut who shoots up the campus than they are to stop it. What are they going to do, bring automatic weapons to school every day?

Yeah, that's my dream of a shining city on the hill: Children with automatic weapons. Good one, conservatards!

3:25:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Tragic really. I worry for those kids.

8:47:00 AM  
Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

A few years ago when I was the head of a group that teaches boating safety, I had planned to work with the local Sea Scouts, but when I went to their website and learned that they had just had Ann Coulter "a conservative commentator" to speak to the kids, my disgust level precluded further action.

I was once a Scout and it started a lifelong love of the outdoors and nature, but this seems to be one of those times in scouting's history when it's being used as a political tool behind our backs. Indoctrinating kids in xenophobia and the dehumanizing of racial groups is disgusting and reprehensible, even if done on a small scale basis, and I think that's the case here. I can't say more because I'll lose it for sure.

10:31:00 AM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

It's very sad to see the original mission of scouting preverted like this. I also found a lifelong love of nature through it.

11:53:00 AM  
Blogger Cosa Nostradamus said...

The fact is, the original Scouting "movement" in Britain was something of a proto-Fascist attempt at indoctrinating children in "right-thinking" by a very right-wing Brit.

The tenor of local Scout groups in America is pretty much up to the individual adults who volunteer their time. When we were kids, politics wasn't much a part of that. I suspect that problem today is that only weird conservatard weenies would even consider volunteering their time. And they're doing it with deliberate political intent.

Volunteer yourself, or keep your kid out of it, I'd say. Not all pedophiles are gay, or even sexual. Some are just Nazi creeps.

12:14:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I wouldn't let my kid join Explorers for sure, if I still had kids young enough to join.

3:46:00 PM  

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