Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Another moral/parenting dilemma

I [insert name] promise to do my best
To do my duty to God and my country
To help other people
And to obey the law of the pack


"You will put God first and do what you know God wants you to do."

I don't want to lie. I don't ever want my son to lie. But can I honestly expect him to do what he KNOWS God wants him to do? He's six! It's a complicated question that I wrestle with at age 36! I don't want him to miss out on the scout experience. But it seems somehow dishonest to promise something like this.

(And don't ever google this particular issue...the hostility and venom out there over Boy Scouts will scare the crap out of you.)

5 comments:

Kathy McC said...

We got an invite to the first cub scout meeting of the year. We didn't go. I don't promote an organization that discriminates against gay people and those who do not believe in God.

So you're not alone! :-)

Jillian said...

I had to ask a friend about this but over here, God and religion have very little to do with tying knots and crawling through mud. Scouts (the same ones that attend the world jamboree things) do not make any pledge to God - it's a bit segregationist if you ask me. No one is included or excluded due to their religion. Apart from the spiritual dilemma you are having, it's pretty offensive to include religion in such an organisation. There are churchy versions of these things here, but Scouts are non denominational and for girls and boys.

Hopefully there'll be no tricky questions with that set up ;)

Roberta said...

Our pledge says "...I promise to be true to myself, my God/faith and Canada, to help others and accept the guiding law"

I like it pretty well - it means different things to different girls.

As an aside, when Julianna and the other girls her age took the pledge a couple of years ago, I invited a big wig from our area to enroll the girls. When it was Julie's turn, the commissioner said "Do you know and accept the guiding law?" She was supposed to say "Yes" and shake hands, but instead she is all serious, and says "I think so. I mean. I kinda know it, and I think I get it. Yeah. I think I know it. I don't have it memorized."

kate said...

What you need to do is insert a colon.

"To do my duty to God and my country:
To help other people"

See, then they are not separate things and noone needs puzzle over what greater thing God wants us to do. Surely helping other people can be viewed as a way of manifesting God in this world. Perhaps, in fact, the only way. Punctuation rocks!

BTW, we were never involved in scouting and probably never will be. Someone tried to recruit A once (when he was older, 11 or so), but he wasn't that interested and i didn't really like the underlying religious slant in the literature that came home. It is not that i am against religious slants (after all, he goes to Catholic school), but it was more that this seemed somehow insidious. Like, we are just going camping but sneaking a little God in there -- it's good for you. Huh.

Hennifer said...

I ditto the first comment and I'll take your word on the google aspect