Readers — This one is so utterly insane I’ve been saving it all week as just the thing to shake us up all weekend. (Why we should spend all weekend shook up by the insanity of pop culture, I don’t know. But somehow, it just feels right.)
Anyway, here it is, from Times Online in England:
Penknives may have formed as much part of the scouting experience as badges and campfires, but according to advice from the Scout Association they must no longer be brought on camping trips, except when there is a “specific” need.
The reason is a growing “knife culture” in England — despite the fact that no one seems to have been stabbed to death by a Boy Scout on his way to a campfire. While apparently carrying a fold-up knife whose blade is shorter than 3 inches is still actually legal, the Scout Assocation nonetheless recommends that “knives should be carried to and from meetings by an adult and must not be carried around campsites.”
Maybe Scouts should be carried to and from meetings by an adult, too?
Both my sons are Boy Scouts. I love the Scouts and thank God they take kids out into the wilderness (albeit, here in New York City, by subway, ferry and taxi. For real.) Without knives would my boys feel half as loyal, brave, reverent, thrifty and, more to the point, COOL? No way. Knives are one of the biggest lures of Scouts, beckoning boys into a culture that inculcates all sorts of great stuff, like resourcefulness, responsibility, and the ability to suck venom from a snake bite.
Free-Range Kids’ message to Britian’s Scout Association is simple: Grow up. — Lenore