On Monday, President Donald Trump took the stage at the 2017 Boy Scout National Jamboree in West Virginia and proceeded to address the scouts in a speech. After commenting on the size of the crowd and how the press would most likely downplay the attendance, he said that he would leave Washington policy fights out of his speech (while mentioning his problems with “fake news” in the same sentence). By the end of the president’s speech it was clear the he himself was no scout, not because he said he wasn’t, but because trustworthiness is the first principle in the scout law, and he had failed to keep his promise of no politics (“As a scouting parent, I was horrified by Trump’s speech,” July 26).
Throughout the speech, President Trump brought up the subjects of fake news, Obamacare, his cabinet’s loyalty, the election results and not being able to say “Merry Christmas” because of political correctness in society. He also asked if Barack Obama had ever gone to a jamboree, called the American government a “cesspool” and a “sewer” and pointed out the media coverage of his speech. As the speech went on, it became clear that President Trump had two audiences that he was swapping his attention between, the Boy Scouts and the press. As he would talk about scouting and its merits for young boys, he would just as easily attack his enemies or pat himself on the back. Half of the speech was given as if though he were at a rally gathered to celebrate him and not an event gathered to celebrate scouting across America. This was not the place nor the audience for such a speech.
I am a Boy Scout, and I know that scouts can have very opinionated views on the government and President Trump. This speech looked like an attempt to swing these views over to his side. Scouting is about bringing young men together to learn how to be a good citizen of the United States and the world. Mr. Trump tried to take this organization and turn its members into those who attack and slander the left, just as he does, which is something even worse to think about when those members are just boys.The president’s speech was very much unacceptable and did not belong anywhere near the Boy Scouts of America.
Alex Goshorn, Arnold
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