Boy scouts: What is going on?

Anthony Portal

Sexual Assault:

          Accusations of sexual assault have been swirling around the BSA for quite a while. Most recently, there have been 92,700 sex abuse cases filed against the Boy Scouts.  Though that’s a fraction of the 2.2 million scouts involved in the organization, this drastic number of accusations reflects poorly on the BSA. “Shocking but not surprised, mostly because they need to take better responsibility to take care of doing a screening of people because these leaders are just volunteers and anyone can do it,” said Raissa Lana, a sibling to many past and present Boy Scouts. She advocates for stronger procedures for screening new volunteers and adult leaders so parents don’t have to question its trustworthiness. Because of all these cases, the Boy Scouts filed for bankruptcy in February.  The bankruptcy is proceeding to help compensate all of the victims of sexual abuse. Gill Gayle, a survivor of sexual abuse from the organization states that he was twice abused as a scout in the 1970s says that having a lot of people come forward about their experiences with this problem helps to spread awareness on this issue. With more awareness being spread around the country and through communities, the BSA is able to help create a more thorough course of action to help solve this controversial issue.

Covid Impact: 

          When COVID began at the beginning of 2020, the BSA made the decision to put a halt to having in-person Scout meetings for the time being and replace them with virtual Zoom meetings. This was a controversial decision as Boy Scouts is supposed to be an adventurous and outdoor experience with lots of learning through nature and hiking, but none of this could be done through a computer screen. “Zoom meetings are incompatible with the way Scouts operate or at least how they should operate. Scouts need time with their individual patrols, and they need in-person guidance for rank advancements,” said Eagle Scout Desmond Hoffman. Boy Scouts is all about being outdoors, exploring and learning new skill sets as a group, which cannot be done when you are away from the outdoors, and separated from the ones you are in scouts. Without these in-person meetings, Scouts are unable to complete rank advancements which then preclude them from earning the rank of Eagle.  The rank of Eagle Scout is the main reason why people join the BSA.

Covid affecting Boy Scouts
COVID impact (Anthony Portal)

Eagle Scout:

          Becoming an eagle scout is a big and very important achievement for the scouts who strive for this goal. In fact, there are many famous people who have achieved this rank such as Neil Armstrong, Thomas Foley, and John Konack. These people got to become the rank of Eagle because of their dedication and hard work they put towards it. In order to earn the rank of eagle scout, you have to learn, practice, and work on many skills, indoors and out. Scouts are required to do a lot of good for others aside from themselves. This is done by the hundreds of service hours that get done a year by them and all their work gets done to help others which is what makes scouts such an exciting time. Becoming an eagle scout requires a lot of effort and dedication to achieve. It shows that you are capable of using lots of skill and effort when you are face to face with an obstacle and that you don’t stop until you push through the obstacle in your path. “I think in the long run, it gives you opportunities you wouldn’t have otherwise because with being an eagle scout, you can go further than where you would go without it,” said Joe Portal, the father of a prospective Eagle Scout. Only 4% of all scouts have earned this rank which makes it such a big achievement when they do and part of that is the very short few years they are given to accomplish all of the work.

Eagle Project Workbook
Working on the Eagle project (Anthony Portal)