Scouting for atheists?

Oct 20, 2012 | Posted by: roboblogger | Full story: Harry's Place

It was recently reported that an 11 year old boy, George Pratt, was unable to join the Scouts because, as an atheist, he refused to swear to do his duty to God.

Comments
1 - 11 of 11 Comments Last updated Oct 29, 2012

“It's just a box of rain...”

Since: May 07

Knoxville, TN

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#1
Oct 20, 2012
 

Judged:

3

2

1

I, for one, see no problem with the Scout's policy of excluding nonbelievers. But when they do so, they place themselves in the category of religious organizations that are ineligible for government support or endorsement, which also removes pubic schools as legitimate recruiting grounds for new members. The Department of Education should issue a policy statement to all local schools to this effect.

“cdesign proponentsists”

Since: Jul 09

Pittsburgh, PA

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#2
Oct 20, 2012
 
NightSerf wrote:
I, for one, see no problem with the Scout's policy of excluding nonbelievers. But when they do so, they place themselves in the category of religious organizations that are ineligible for government support or endorsement, which also removes pubic schools as legitimate recruiting grounds for new members. The Department of Education should issue a policy statement to all local schools to this effect.
Fully agree!

Since: Mar 11

Chicago, IL

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#3
Oct 20, 2012
 

Judged:

1

Well said and this scout troop that refused to allow the atheist child should be ashamed.

And sued for a substantial amount of money.
henry

Germany

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#4
Oct 21, 2012
 
Givemeliberty wrote:
Well said and this scout troop that refused to allow the atheist child should be ashamed.
And sued for a substantial amount of money.
The scouts are also a religious sect!
KittenKoder

Brisbane, Australia

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#5
Oct 21, 2012
 

Judged:

1

1

1

Scouting for atheists????
You can usually find them on mass in public toilets at night

“cdesign proponentsists”

Since: Jul 09

Pittsburgh, PA

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#6
Oct 21, 2012
 
KittenKoder wrote:
Scouting for atheists????
You can usually find them on mass in public toilets at night
So, just how much time do you spend in public toilets at night? Never mind! We already know.

“I Am No One Else”

Since: Apr 12

Seattle

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#7
Oct 22, 2012
 
I say we make a better scouting organization that does not support bigotry, and government funding from the BSA should be revoked. GSA .... oddly not so bad. lol

GIRL POWER!

Since: Sep 10

Earth

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#8
Oct 22, 2012
 
I have never seen the point of "scouting". If it ever had any, if it ever was a "place to learn skills", it stopped being one and became a club, a status symbol to sneer at those who were never in it. It's no different than university frat houses.

A kids' science and life skills club would be far more useful, like a year round Camp Quest (the summer camp for atheist kids). Get the kids outdoors to look at nature and learn outdoor skills; get them in a science lab and teach them basic chemistry; give them hands-on computing (i.e. putting together a tower PC), etc. Make it useful and inspire them to be curious.
EdSed

Hamilton, UK

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#9
Oct 27, 2012
 
I don't see segregating children according to their parent's religious delusions for educational or recreational purposes is ever constructive. It would seem to be in the best interests of the children for the Scouts to be and remain inclusive of all.

None of the Scouts I've ever met have been in the least interested in status symbols or exclusivity. And the mass of them seem wiser than anyone who sneers at people.

No point in Scouts? They seem to have great fun and learn things too. No point in rubbishing the enjoyment or constructive efforts of others. I've always seen the Scouts in a generally positive way and see no grounds to do otherwise.

The main thing I take from this thread so far is to remember not to tar all with the same brush.
EdSed

Hamilton, UK

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#10
Oct 27, 2012
 
Givemeliberty wrote:
...And sued for a substantial amount of money.
Sued?? Jesus wept!
That's what to teach children - if someone blinks at you the wrong way, sue them!

I wonder how this story will end. I'm waiting to see if the policy will change. This case is from the UK and most people here think George has been treated disgracefully. It is certainly embarrassing for the ScoutsUK.

The first question is: why are children asked to take an oath or affirmation? Shouldn't they be taught that one only makes affirmations/oaths for sound reasons and important matters? Oaths and affirmations should be a matter for courtrooms, not kids clubs.
EdSed

Hamilton, UK

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#11
Oct 29, 2012
 
I have changed my opinions above. It is not one rogue group(s) of bigots that is the cause of this...
http://www.humanism.org.uk/news/view/1129

I have written to Mr Simon Carter who has confirmed that atheists are discriminated against in the Scouts, UK. He seems to think that if people don't like the Scout Promise as officially administered in the UK they should just go elsewhere and apparently sees no reason why Scouts should be inclusive of all children. He wrote, quote, "its not me [personally]". He apparently just adminsters the policy (against his better judgement??)

What an embarrassment to Scouting and the UK. 11 year olds in the UK often seem more mature and tolerant than their 'spiritual leaders'. Religious dogma is apparently more important to these Scout 'leaders' than inclusiveness of all children in the Scouting movement.

A funny thing is that the only Scout leader I have ever knowingly met is an atheist.

Tell me when this thread is updated: (Registration is not required)

Add to my Tracker Send me an email

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

•••