I’ve always been proud to say that, like many other little girls, I was a Girl Scout as a kid. I went to the meetings every Friday night in an elementary school cafeteria and held up three little fingers to recite the Girl Scout Promise. I had the vest that my mom would iron badges onto (because nothing was cooler than a bright new badge.) Yea, I sold cookies at a little table at the mall for hours on end, though thankfully I was too tall to wear the cookie suit. I owe several lifetime friendships and a foundation of strong morals to the Girl Scouts. It’s disheartening to see the media heat they’ve suffered under in recent years.
Back in 2012, a national boycott was called in response to the organization’s support and admission of a 7-year-old transgendered Scout into a Colorado troop, by a 14-year-old California girl. The group was bashed for lying to the American public and for not being “safe” for all girls. These claims were made because the organization allowed a 1st grader student participate with her peers. The Girl Scouts have always thrived on the motto “for every girl, everywhere.” The group’s refusal to participate in the exclusion of transgendered girls sets a positive example for all people to be more inclusive and accepting. After all, it’s “for every girl, everywhere.”
Currently, pro-life activists are calling for a “Cookie Cott” for the year 2014 in the wake of the national organization’s support of those who advocate for pro-choice, like Wendy Davis and Kathleen Sibelius. Last December, GSUSA tweeted a list of influential women of 2013 which included the Texas Senator Davis and posted to their Facebook another “Women of the Year” list that included US Health Secretary, Sibelius. Without ever actually making a formal pro-choice statement, The Girl Scouts are yet again “too liberal” to be supported by conservatives. Instead of being recognized for actively promoting success and providing opportunities for their members, there are people ready to choke them monetarily just to see them fail.
The fact that the Girl Scouts organization wants to uplift our little sisters and baby cousins but they are consistently met with such hostility is saddening. To what end will this boycott bring? Not buying a $3 box of Thin Mints won’t silence our voices. Passing on some Samoas won’t stop us from becoming integral and significant people in this world. There is no pride in preventing a Girl Scout troop from going camping, or in preventing them from reaching their sales goal. The point of selling cookies is not just to fundraise, but to teach our girls the meaning of a dollar and to incite leadership and management skills that will serve them for the rest of their lives.
If you plan on not buying some Tagalongs this cookie season to participate in the “Cookie Cott,” know that you won’t be able stop the Girl Scouts from molding and uplifting young girls to be the best they can be.
More for the rest of us, anyway.