Boy Scouts Become Latest Casualty in War on Masculinity


The Boy Scouts of America announced on Wednesday that they have changed their organization’s male-only policy to now include female membership in the scouts. Starting in 2018, the Cub Scouts — an organization traditionally reserved for young boys and affiliate of the Boy Scouts — will be open to girls, with a program for older females expected to be rolled out in 2019. As of now, this change will affect the overall organization but will not alter the single-sex nature of scout troops, the smallest and most intimate groups in the Boy Scouts. This shift also is not the first major one made by the group this year. In January, the Boy Scouts announced they would be accepting transgender individuals into their ranks as well.

When asked why the Boy Scouts have made this most recent change, the group’s national board chairman Randall Stephenson stated, “I’ve seen nothing that develops leadership skills and discipline like this organization… It is time to make these outstanding leadership development programs available to girls.” But what about the Girl Scouts? In recent years, parents of girl scouts have complained that the organization is not adaptable enough for girls with more “non-traditional interests” and inadequate at providing young girls with the fellowship and growth that they require. This is a genuine complaint, but it does not excuse a subversion of the foundations of the Boy Scouts.

The Boy Scouts exist to help boys become men while inculcating virtue, character and citizenship; allowing females as members undermines these goals. This is not to say that the aforementioned values are not to be treasured and encouraged for young girls, but to pretend they take the same form for each gender is asinine. Men and women are different — this is a fact borne out by biology, philosophy and common sense. Girls cannot grow into men, and boys cannot grow into women; raising a generation that believes otherwise is not only fallacious but unhealthy.

Every day, boys in the classroom are commanded to be more docile, less rambunctious, and more feminine. C.S. Lewis described a man as being “not a compromise or happy mean between ferocity and meekness; he is fierce to the nth and meek to the nth…” There is something innately unique about boyhood and subsequently manhood. Men are called to be furiously passionate and furiously protective, traits that can only be learned through fraternal bonding and male mentorship. The addition of femininity into this fraternal sphere corrupts the growth of both young boys and young girls.

Unfortunately, this relativism is not a new phenomena and should come as no surprise for those in tune with the shifting culture of the United States. From the wide ranging acceptance of transgenderism as normal to the overwhelming criticism of anything exclusively masculine, the idea of manhood is under attack. We as a society have normalized delusion and blurred the lines between the two genders. Instead of celebrating the differences that make us unique, important and dependent on one another, we have have turned each human into an amorphous mass that can be shaped into anything we desire. We have accepted the fallacious assertion that a relationship between two men or two women could be as edifying as one between a man and a woman. This has led not only to a devaluing of the importance of an intact family unit but has also led to such lunacy as the Boy Scouts including non-boys.

The solution to a failed system of scouting for girls is to fix said system, not to corrupt another one. Both young boys and girls need time separated from one another in order to grow and mature, especially in prepubescent and pubescent years. Boys need to learn proper fraternity; they need to understand that their natural masculinity is something to be celebrated and molded into its appropriate form, not something to be feared or hidden away.

Shame on the Boys Scouts for capitulating to this culture of gender relativism. Rather than instilling the values they claim to promote, they are instead undermining proper masculinity and femininity — a mistake the next generation will soon come to regret.

Erik Halvorson

Erik Halvorson is a regular contributor to and a student at Hillsdale College.

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