Just wondering how people here feel about the Girl Scout or Boy Scout pledges including serving "God" in their pledge.  My 10 year old daughter just joined Girl Scouts today and I grew up in scouting.  As an atheist I simply left that part of the pledge out this evening but my agnostic daughter said it.  I'm not too bothered by it, but feel that the Girl Scouts in particular are attempting to be inclusive.  Recently they did change policy to allow girls to not say that part of the pledge, I'm just curious how other people feel about it here.

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It depends on the leader. I took my daughter out of scouting because the leader made the girls say prayers and talked about god throughout the meetings even after i told her several times we were atheists and didn't like it. I reported it to the state and regional leaders, then pulled my daughter from GS. Every troop is different. My state leaders responded by sending me a list of several badges on christianity and god.
I talked to the person above her and that person said she had refused to go through to the training, but was still in the window to do it. I started the training to be an assistant leader, but I have MS and I really feel that is too much for me. We're moving to another state soon and hopefully we will find a good troop there. My daughter really liked Scouts. :o(
Just FYI, the scouts, being a private organization, have a stipulation in the rules that to be a member you must believe in a power greater than yourself, ie a god of some sort. That is only Boyscouts, I don't know about Girl Scouts, but I know to get my Eagle Scout I had to admit to believing in something larger than myself, or a power greater than man, to receive the award, or just to be a member in general.
I'm an eagle scout and a member of the military. both organizations have 'god' infused in them... If I came out about being atheist publicly, I would lose my eagle scout award (its happened before to others) and would probably get hazed in my unit. Not sure how I feel about it.. boyscouts is a private organization, but receives funding from the government. the military, obviously, is funded entirely by the government.. it shouldn't be tolerated to discriminate against religion, but its not the organization that condones it, but the people who are enlisted and commissioned whose personalities necessitate it... simply, its the human factor... that can't be eliminated. short answer is, the things you describe are not new to me, but I'm not particularly riled up about it. Its just the way people are.

"I'm just curious how other people feel about it here." 

As an atheist child in the late '60s, I was kicked out of a "scout-like" organization in Winnipeg, because I kept expressing my doubts ('that sounds made up', 'I don't believe that', etc) during anything that mentioned god or religion. In retrospect, I'm kinda' proud that I was kicked out for being a vocal atheist even before I knew what it meant. 

As a parent (with a daughter, a step daughter and a step son):

It's not just the god inclusion that makes me wary. Being that I'm a (male) feminist, it's the entire boy scout/girl scout (yes I know they're different orgs) demarcation - separatism that gives pause...

I would also recommend looking into Camp Quest and other similar secular organizations for kids. 

Thanks Richard, I'm going to Reason Rally and I'm taking my daughter.  They're going to have a Camp Quest tent!


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