Thousands of girls are joining boys as Cub Scouts – and a Christ-centered organization for boys thinks that's dangerous.
The Boy Scouts announced in October 2017 that it would begin admitting girls into the Cub Scouts this year. A new program is planned next year for older girls based on the Boy Scout curriculum. Regardless, more than 170 groups of Cub Scouts are participating in an "early adopter" program.
"We heard from our families [saying] Okay, you've made the decision – can you please give us a way to do this right now because we've got families and daughters that are just really excited about it," Boy Scouts spokeswoman Effie Delimarkos told The Associated Press.
Mark Hancock, chief executive officer of Trail Life USA – a Christ-centered outdoor adventure, leadership, and character development ministry – says his organization is sad for the boys. Pointing to statistics from the Department of Education, Hancock says boys are three times more likely to be enrolled in special education programs and four times more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD.
"Clearly, schools are designed for girls – and now we're moving into this adventure area," he discusses with OneNewsNow. "And [for] an organization like Boy Scouts for America – which has produced presidents and senators and congressmen and astronauts – to suddenly say that there's nothing special about their program, that boys and girls are the same? We just think that's dangerous."
Trail Life USA began in 2013. It currently operates in 49 states and is approaching 27,000 members. A sister organization, American Heritage Girls, is also available. "Boys and girls need their own place to thrive, their own place to be who it is that they are, [to discover] their own unique strengths, their own unique ways of approaching the world," Hancock adds.
In its coverage of girls joining boys as Cub Scouts, The Associated Press documents a co-ed lesson on building wooden toolboxes. "... The girls raised their hands and waited to be called on, while the boys were somewhat silly, cracking jokes about flying airplanes when asked about drilling pilot holes," the AP reports.
Hancock finds that revealing: "That says the whole thing," he says. "The boys took one approach to it and the girls took another approach to it – and we just think the next step to that is that leader saying things to boys like, 'Why can't you sit there quietly like the girls?' They get that in school, they get that everywhere they go.
"It's just shocking this kind of assault we've had on boyhood," he concludes. "It's been a war against boyhood for some time now."