Five radical extremists shake the foundation of one of the U.S’s oldest institutions. Yes, I’m talking about Allie Westover (13), Daphne Mortenson (10), Taylor Alcozer (10), Ella Jacobs (10) and Skyler Westover (10). These tween girls calling themselves the Unicorns are challenging the Boy Scouts of America’s boys only policy.
On Nov. 13 the Unicorns had a meeting at their local Santa Rosa, CA Boy Scout headquarters. The girls confronted troop leaders and demanded to be made full-fledged Boy Scouts.
The men on the panel lashed back with this devastating response: They would forward the girls’ requests to the national office, but said they actually have no local authority to admit them.
The Unicorns are iconic revolutionaries like Martin Luther King, Ghandi, Che Guevara, abolitionist John Brown, wait a minute…. these are all men! The girls are following in the footsteps of Carrie Crosman, Carla Schewenk, Marystephanie Constantikes, Margo Menkes, and Katrina Yeaw. Of course, you’ve never heard of these women because the Boy Scouts didn’t allow them in.
I couldn’t resist the urge to create the buzz of a traditional news story, so this gets the attention it deserves. But this story is so important that it also needs an honest heartfelt approach.
Open Letter to the Unicorns,
First of all girls, I love your vision and I adore the name. Unicorns! My daughter would totally approve. Secondly, selling Girl-Scout cookies? That’ is soooo 50’s and sexist. It is a shame that the 103 year-old institution of the Girl Scouts hinges on cookie sales. Girl Scouts should be empowering girls to be associated with (male-dominated) science, math and peace negotiations not baking and selling. It’s 2015, it’s no longer “a woman’s place is in the kitchen” a woman’s place is in the world.
It’s fun to be the renegades that take down a 105 year-old empire. That’s monumental and historical. But seriously, staging a coup is a LOT of work. Whew! Emotionally and physically. What’s your end game? So you get in a stodgy old boys club. (borrrrr-ing.) Then what? You make knots and camp. Now instead of doing stereotypical gender-biased girls activities you are now doing stereotypical gender-biased boys activities, and hanging out with this guy:
Forget the Boy Scouts, they don’t deserve you! And forget the Girl Scouts if they don’t inspire you. Unicorns, I implore you to put the YOU in the You-Nicorns! This is your chance for change. Create your own organization with your own laws.
Don’t bog yourself down with changing one organization’s bylaws. Busy yourself with changing public opinion. That is way harder, more beneficial and rewarding than changing laws.
When the issue is about getting GIRLS in a BOYS club, it creates divisiveness. Grown-ups feel like the have to choose sides, like it’s two teams and only one gets to win. It’s silly, but that’s how adults are. We are just children with driver’s licenses and credit cards. American adults have views that are already too black and white. We have a hard enough time seeing grey areas. I hope your generation can see the grey areas and break the cycle of tunnel vision. I wish nothing more than when someone presents a problem and the solution seems either being black or white, you yell out, “Purple! With blue glitter!”
And from a branding standpoint, it would cost a fortune to change all the national marketing and logos from “Boy Scouts” to “Boy-Girl Scouts” or “Scouts” or “BS.”
Why not ask the Boy Scouts to be a parent corporation to the Unicorns? Get them to fund you. Sure, it’s hush money, but very public, so there’s no shame in that. Or maybe hit up POTUS for some federal funds. He has two daughters and is pro-girl:
Unicorns, your generation will be the one where girls rule the world. Remember that, and don’t ever forget it. Don’t try to figure out how you can get two partisan sides together to meet in the middle and broker a deal. Figure out a way to make the whole country bi-partisan, or take party lines and erase them, demolish them and crush them.
Allie, Daphne, Taylor, Ella and Skyler, I admire your passion and your moxie. Many have come before you and failed. You don’t need permission from a 105 year-old mens club to camp. It’s a boys club. Form your own rad girls club. Or a boy-girl club. Don’t go into the Boy Scouts just to make a statement. Instead, develop the real changes you want to see in the world. Boys will be boys, but luckily girls will be girls. Rock it. Love it. Own it.