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View Diary: This response ends the debate on gay Scouts. (176 comments)

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  •  You're thinking of the GIRL Scouts (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    suzq, wu ming, lotlizard

    (Girl Guides in England).   Different organizations, different goals altogether.

    Actually ... Baden-Powell's original idea grew out of what he considered abysmal quality of the raw recruits his South African command  was getting from the ranks of England's urban poor, during the Boer War.

    You can read about it in (Socialist) Jack London's People of the Abyss (c. 1905).  The boys from England's slums who sought military service as their "way out" tended to be undernourished, semi-literate at best, dirty, undisciplined, and physically feeble --   not at all the "Yeoman Stock",  that England had depended on  for so many centuries.

    Baden-Powell felt that a program of games and good example could wean boys away from their lumpen proletarian street values and replace them with more middle class aspirations ... and at least teach them  to wash their feet and brush their teeth on a daily basis.

    It was a process of turning "street arabs"  (like the Baker Street Irregulars) into "Tommy Atkins" ... "not braver than other men, just as brave for a little bit longer."

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