After being known for 108 years as Boy Scouts the newly coed organization is dropping the "boys" from its name. The AP reports:
The organization on Wednesday announced a new name for its Boy Scouts program: Scouts BSA. The change will take effect in February.
Chief Scout Executive Mike Surbaugh said many possibilities were considered during lengthy and “incredibly fun” deliberations before the new name was chosen.
“We wanted to land on something that evokes the past but also conveys the inclusive nature of the program going forward,” he said. “We’re trying to find the right way to say we’re here for both young men and young women.”
The parent organization will remain the Boy Scouts of America, and the Cub Scouts — its program serving children from kindergarten through fifth grade — will keep its title, as well.
But the Boy Scouts — the program for 11- to 17-year-olds — will now be Scouts BSA.
The organization already has started admitting girls into the Cub Scouts, and Scouts BSA begins accepting girls next year.
The Boy Scouts had suffered from declining numbers for years, but the news that the organization would go coed hit with a certain amount of sadness.
It sent the message that nothing could ever be single-sex only. It was furthermore a sign of the times that in a world in which the word "toxic" is often attached to masculinity, that an organization that inculcated the virtues of decent manliness was having a hard time surviving. When it was announced that the Boy Scouts were going coed Julie wrote an excellent artcle ("Is There a Merit Badge for Gender Denial?") explaining why it was such a shame that the premiere organization for boys had lost its way.
It should come as no surprise that the National Organization for Women lobbied for the Scouts to go coed,.
It'll be interesting to see if girls actually join the organization or if they remain loyal to the Girls Scouts, which is now a fierce competitor, especially regarding recruitment of new members, rather than a complimentary organization.