As the father of a son who recently earned his Eagle award and a daughter who just got her Silver, I’m appalled at a comment from a spokeswoman for the Boy Scouts of America that appears in today’s Boston Globe. Renee Fairrer tells reporter Irene Sege:
The Girl Scouts, pretty much they’re known for the Girl Scout cookies. When people think of Boy Scouts, they think of Eagle awards. They think of service.
Girl Scouts have to put in a tremendous number of service hours for their awards. The requirements can’t be directly compared, but the Silver award, for girls 11 to 14 years old, specifies that a girl put in 40 hours. The Gold, for girls up to the age of 18, requires 65 hours, according to a workbook my daughter has.
The Eagle, which a boy can earn up until he turns 18, does not specify a minimum number of hours for a service project, though such projects usually run about 100 cumulative hours from everyone who participates. In practical terms, that means the scout himself generally puts in fewer than 40 hours of his own time.
Too bad Fairrer didn’t understand that before she opened her mouth and inserted her foot.