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Letter: BSA should be supported, not destroyed

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The Boy Scouts of America provides the nation’s foremost youth program of character development and values-based leadership training, which helps young people be “Prepared, For Life.” The Scouting organization is currently composed of approximately 2.2 million youth members between the ages of 5 and 21 and approximately 800,000 volunteers in local councils throughout the United States and its territories.*

Since its inception in 1910, more than 130 million young men and women have participated in the BSA’s youth programs. More than 35 million adult volunteers have helped carry out the BSA’s mission.*

If 10,000 former scouts come forward with claims of sexual abuse, as referenced to by several attorneys currently filing class-action lawsuits against the BSA, they would represent approximately 0.0002857% of the BSA program’s 35 million adult volunteers.

As a former volunteer Scoutmaster and Eagle Scout I am emphatic in my belief that no sexual abuse is acceptable. I am not attempting to dismiss or minimize the devastating consequences of any abuse however, potentially characterizing 35 million adult volunteers as having a “dark history” is disproportional, unjust and unfair.

Scouting remains a valuable youth character building and leadership development program and should be supported not destroyed.

*Information provided by the Boy Scouts of America Inc.

Mark Allen

Crawfordsville

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