Eagle Scout son Buster, rappelling down cliff; part of 50 mile Trek
The 100th Anniversary of the Boy Scouts of America is an occasion worth noting by an American president; the organization can count among its former members numerous Presidents, Astronauts, Military Leaders, Legislators, Churchmen, Public Servants, Businessmen, Environmentalists, First Responders and Entrepreneurs who, as scouts, learned basic values of citizenship, responsibility, leadership skills and a code of conduct that has informed their whole lives.
My husband, hearing a public safety announcement about rules for summer safety (“do not dive in shallow water; thoroughly douse campfires…”) said to me the other day, “it’s funny; the government will pay all sorts of money to create these messages, but this is basic safety instruction that every boyscout (and Girl Scout) learns. You’d think the government would want to promote an organization that teaches health, safety and survival skills and encourages learning and self-sufficiency, but it doesn’t. It would cost the government nothing to encourage kids to join scouting, and it would create better citizens.”
This week President Obama has chosen to fly to New York, and appear on The View, to bask in the gushes of the Upper West Side, rather than spend any time at a special-event Boy Scout Jamboree that he could drive to.
President Obama will make history as the first sitting president on a daytime talk show when he visits with the ladies of “The View.” But he’ll be missing out on another historic occasion — the Boy Scouts’ Jamboree marking the group’s 100th anniversary, right in the president’s backyard.
The Jamboree kicked off this week at Fort A.P. Hill in Virginia, where organizers had invited the president to speak to the 45,000 scouts in attendance. All three of Obama’s predecessors have made it to one Jamboree while in office.
But the president will instead be traveling Wednesday to New York for a taping of the ABC show, as well as Democratic fundraisers and a stop in New Jersey. The talk show appearance comes as campaign season moves into full swing, but also amid efforts to cap the Gulf oil spill for good, contain the damage from an unprecedented leak of Afghanistan war documents and battle Arizona over its immigration law — set to go into effect Thursday. Obama also has an out-of-town event planned for Friday in Detroit.
Obama is sending a videotaped message, of course, and sometimes that is what presidents have to do, depending up on their schedules, but as honorary president of an organization that has served the nation well and is celebrating a meaningful anniversary so nearby, doesn’t it seem like there should have been an available half-hour?
After all, he can make dubious “history” as the first sitting president to visit the The View any time he wants to, but the BSA will only have its 100th Anniversary Jamboree this week.
But celebrating 100 years of Scouting history would be about the scouts, wouldn’t it? His “history making” appearance on a ghastly daytime talk program will be all about him.
A no-brainer, then.
I’ve heard people wonder whether Obama is the president of the whole country, or just those districts that voted for him and would do so again, unreservedly, as in the Upper West Side. I’ve heard people wonder if the government wants to promote dependency over self-sufficiency. Perhaps Obama’s choices give us our answer.