Boy Scouts Apologize To Parents For Trump’s Jamboree Speech But White House Declines To Apologize

Many were surprised — and a bit saddened — to hear President Donald Trump give a highly partisan speech at the National Scout Jamboree.  For roughly 80 years, Presidents have avoided political speeches at the event. That tradition was shattered in a big way by Trump on Monday before 40,000 scouts.  Now the Boy Scouts of America has issued a formal apology to all of the parents about the content of Trump’s speech — a stinging rebuke for the President.  The White House responded by refusing to apologize from the departure of 80 years of precedent.


Chief Scout Executive Michael Surbaugh told parents “I want to extend my sincere apologies to those in our Scouting family who were offended by the political rhetoric that was inserted into the jamboree. That was never our intent.  The invitation for the sitting U.S. president to visit the National Jamboree is a long-standing tradition. … We sincerely regret that politics were inserted into the Scouting program,”
Curiously, Trump himself seemed acknowledge the long-standing bar on political discussions shortly before he proceeded to talk politics:”Who the Hell wants to speak about politics when I’m in front of the Boy Scouts.”
 Trump even used the Boy Scouts loyalty pledge to chastise the politically unreliable in Washington: “We could really use some more loyalty, I will tell you that.”
Surbaugh added “These character-building experiences have not diminished in recent days at the jamboree — Scouts have continued to trade patches, climb rock walls, and share stories about the day’s adventures. But for our Scouting family at home not able to see these real moments of Scouting, we know the past few days have been overshadowed by the remarks offered by the President of the United States. . . . For years, people have called upon us to take a position on political issues, and we have steadfastly remained non-partisan and refused to comment on political matters. We sincerely regret that politics were inserted into the Scouting program.  While we live in a challenging time in a country divided along political lines, the focus of Scouting remains the same today as every day.”
Despite the criticism and Surbaugh’s letter, the White House on Thursday refused to apologize . White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders insisted that “I saw nothing but roughly 40 to 45,000 Boy Scouts cheering the president on throughout his remarks.”
What is interesting is that these two events involve constituencies that have largely supported the President but both Scout leaders and military veterans criticized Trump for his injection of politics into the events.
Some conservatives have called for “true patriots” to sever ties with the Scouts, which seems perfectly bizarre to me.  The tradition of leaving politics out of the Jamboree was a good one that past presidents have not found particularly difficult.  The Scouts want to bring together families around common values and a connection to the outdoors.  It is not about politics and that is a good thing.
What do you think?

145 thoughts on “Boy Scouts Apologize To Parents For Trump’s Jamboree Speech But White House Declines To Apologize”


    “Boy Scouts’ Transgender Policy Gets Mixed Reaction From Troops January 31, 2017
    Boys Scouts of America says it will allow transgender boys to become Scouts. The news is meeting with mixed reaction from scout troops.

    Transgender boys are now able to join the Boy Scouts of America. The announcement came from the organization last night. It was a reversal of a previous policy. Across the nation, some chapters are cheering. Others are wary. Terry Gildea reports from Utah where Scouting is closely tied to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

    TERRY GILDEA, BYLINE: The decision to accept transgender kids comes largely because the Boy Scouts of America was facing potential litigation from the family of 8-year-old Joe Maldonado, who was born a girl but identifies as a boy. He was kicked out of his New Jersey Cub Scout pack in December. Chief Scout Executive Michael Surbaugh explained the decision in a video press release.

    MICHAEL SURBAUGH: After weeks of significant conversations at all levels of our organization, we realized that referring to birth certificates as the reference point is no longer sufficient.

    GILDEA: But that decision is not sitting well with some people. Gayle Ruzicka saw her sons move through the Scouting program in a troop chartered by a Mormon congregation. She says the BSA’s decisions to allow gay youth, gay adult leaders and now transgender kids shake the very foundation of what Scouting is about.”

    1. EnigmainBlack- Your blog’s articles are note worthy, both informative and interesting. I saw a mention of HBCU’s. The privatizing and corporatizing Gates Foundation has a new program, Frontier Set, which includes 5% of HBCU’s and 0.005% of other colleges and universities. I assume the disproportionate ratio reflects the vulnerability of financially weaker institutions to weaponized “philanthropy”.
      Georgia is one of the two state higher ed systems that are part of Frontier Set. “Georgia will implement business models for collaborative course development and delivery”. IMO, it’s an attack on university independence. It is inappropriate commercialization and structuring of education as a commodity. And, it reflects a scheme to automate which destroys opportunity for middle class jobs in teaching and scholarship.
      The New America tank funded by Gates posted a paper, “Starting from Scratch or a New Vision for Higher Ed.” College drop-out Bill Gates and Walton heirs are transmuting schools with relatively small amounts of money which puts on display, the U.S. oligarchy. The purchase of state politicians and professional organizations can be done cheaply and with ease.
      The Gates and Walton heir-funded Center for American Progress has a plan similar to Rubio’s for a plutocratic plot, already proven to be a failure in K-12.

      1. And that particular Walton heir and Gates are pro socialist and pure supporters of th eleft including it’s neo-aristocatic neo feudalist plutocracy. not to mention it’ s RINO left wing.

        They are supporting and bujilding on Mr. Soros and friends who openly have sated they will destroy the Constitutional Republic and replace it with a Socialist Soviet and all the while Gates and the rest are using them as they are using people like Bernie Sanders to promote International Socialism and the Clintons and Benita Pelosillyni to coin an ad hominem to promote National Socialism .

        and you wonder why we started a couonter revolution and are perplexed why, without a formal party structure we won and you lost. .

        1. Thanks EnigmainBlack.
          CAP published its higher ed plan in Forbes, Nov. 2016, “It’s Time for a Quality Alternative to College Accreditation”. Four months later, Sen. Rubio introduced legislation calling for similar student outcome measures. The CAP staffer who co-write the plan in Forbes was formerly employed by Gates-funded New America. CAP received $2.2 mil. from Gates from 2013-2015. CAP’s V.P. of Education Policy is former TFA, which is a corporate-funded organization that critics describe as anti-union. The Diane Ravitch blog has posts about the perceived colonialism of TFA and its detrimental effects while it pays lip service to the common welfare.

  2. Yes keep “politics” out of scouts….something the scouts didn’t do themselves. Instead they lost “charters” for demanding ‘god’ be kept out of scouts. Instead of fighting off the politics of lgbbqt….they caved. Now they have to apologize ….for a speech they didn’t pre-read? Hogwash.

  3. I don’t know what Trump said, so I cannot comment on the appropriateness of the content.

    In general, there are appearances in which politics should not be discussed. It’s easy to let politics color all aspects of your life, exponentially so for the POTUS. However, there are times when the Predident should be more motivational speaker or grateful guest than partisan.

    That advice holds true for everyone, from
    academia to politics. One should recall that Hillary Clinton injected politics at the funeral of Benghazi victims. Just…don’t. Forget the holier than thou political partisanship and let both sides learn some introspection.

    1. Nicely put and balanced. . but it was apparent those kids were fired up before the speech and something motivated them .

      So 50 years from now will they meet again, the kids now grown, and say remember when that President came and made the usual ho hum graduation speech OR will they come back and say “Wow we were part of that and ……”

    2. Elaine Duke will take over from Kelly and come to think of it Brand in the Justice Department is already past the confirmation stage so the appointments are really just promotions Ok demo’s you can go home while the budget and tax cut bill is written without you.

      With those two in place the RINO-less can figure out how to piece meal the needed replacement parts of ACA under the name Freedom Bill and let market forces kill the legacy a long, slow, agonizing and very public death while Schumer and company watch. Those first two go a different route and the votes are all piece by piece and 50 votes only. I give ACA ………two months maybe three?

        1. Brand is a Republican. Duke has not listing for affiliation but when Obama took over she helped guide the turnover and departed. coming back only when Trump took office . So while the Rinos may be departing the DINOS are not coming in at least in the DHS, Justice and Chief of Staff postiions Far from it.

    3. Trump’s political comments were one part of the speech. His statement that the boys in the audience knew what men do on yachts and, Trump’s exalting the sexual nature of what they do, should be and, is likely offensive to all but the richest 0.1% of men who engage in that behavior. Scouting traditions and stated values are at odds with the content of Trump’s speech.
      The weak, delayed response of the BSA may be because its head is AT&T’s CEO, and friend of Trump. Randall Stephenson.

        1. EnigmainBlack,
          Thanks for adding comment at this blog.
          It’s good to have here, a few people, like you, with knowledge, good judgment and an interest in creating a nation that works toward lofty goals.
          In a relatively short time, the number of repetitive talking points from the extreme right wing/Koch agenda have grown dramatically at this blog. Based on observation, both deficits in objectivity and resistance to evidence characterize the right wing followers, just as hypocrisy finds a comfortable place to reside there. Gordon Lafer’s new book “The One Percent Solution: How corporations are remaking states one at a time” should be on the shelf in every library and should be read by every American.

          (BTW- it appears that fans of Russia perceive the blog as a friendly place for their cause- promoting Trump.)

          1. If you reversed the description that would fit the way the moderate centrists Constitutionalists who are unaligned and unrepresented except for the ability to be self governming view your faction or what it has become. and most of it’s comments as far below the acceptable norm for this blog.

            That is devotees of the foriegn ideology reminiscent of the USSR style of Russia as opposed to the Nationalist version presently in power in that country as well as having rejected the social contract with our Representative Constitutional Republic Since this is a Constitutional Republic the center is obviously The Constitution of course. But that’s the viewpoint of the majority of the largest voting block in the last election.

            My concern is the left faction doesn’t seem to recognize anyone except themselves and lumps the rest under Conservative for whatever reason. Which skews the conversation at time through misdefinition.

            In case you might want to comment on that starting with this curious claim of something called a democracy which of course doesn’t exist in the USA.

            Serious comments are always welcome here as any of us who have been around it a few years can attest.

            1. “…acceptable norm for the blog…” Second paragraph- 39 words but, no subject and verb. “Obviously” and “of course”, a mere two words apart.

              The libertarians’ self-governing, extrapolated, is oligarch governing. (Thomas Picketty’s research provides insight.)
              The 750,000,000 people who have wealth equivalent to one of the 5 richest men in the world may be living in countries where ALEC type organizations write the laws and ALEC funders are also candidate funders.

              1. Your programmers machine caught all of them but it tells me what I wanted to know. In choosing to align the center with some of the right and choose Hillary and Socialist Progressive Democrats as Number One and Number Two targets we did the right thing to uphold our oaths of citizenship and oaths of office to protect our country from…. Smart Alecs? But one always tries to engage in civilized discourse at first.

                So i see 855 of your comrades are being ejected from Russia. That should take care of their end of the Hillary super information pipeline other end.

                In the USA don’t expect to be treated as a welcome guest. ICE is cracking down on illegals.

                Slogan of the Month for August It’s not ad hominem unless it’s a human. Machines don’t count. (As you can tell by their vote tallies. )

          2. Linda, yep. Americans do need to know what their confiscated “tax” dollars are being spent on, huh?

        2. Media report that Condoleeza Rice and former Sec. of Defense, Robert Gates, who both work for a consulting firm where ExxonMobil is a client, recommended Tillerson to Trump- filling the swamp.

          1. Publication, Date of Issue, Editor, Writer? or….rejected.

      1. I was wondering why an ideology which routinely rejects moral values of any sort would even comment on the subject. When you can get away from the atittutudes displayed by the sexist victimizers of women as practices routinely by the Clinton faction and NOW etc. and the other curious features such as using religion as a standard yardstick for immigration as does your ‘professionals’ in the State Department (and has started doing again since immigratin is now under control of SCOTUS one can not imagine why a man to man comment to the Boy Scouts which all young men take as recognition of their pending status should go completely un-noticed.

        Can’t have it both ways.

  4. You’ve got to be kidding. Did Obama EVER address the Boy Scouts? The Left has been trying to destroy the “Bourgeois” Boy scouts for over 30 years. Its same old crap. Even after their acceptance of Gays, most Blue State communities will have nothing to do with the B.S.A.

    The Left wages a relentless cultural war against anything they consider too “Christian” or “Patriotic” or “Conservative” and if anyone makes the mildest of push-backs, then people like the Professor are upset at all the “politicization” and “fighting”.

    Its like some kid getting upset that a kid is punching back when hit by the school bully. When the bully was getting the kid’s lunch money – for six months – people like Prof Turley were A-0K, but when the kid fights back its “Why can’t we all get along?”

  5. If these parents are offended now wait till their little scouts come home from semester break and some left wing progressive professor has gotten into their heads. Oh boy where has our little scout gone.

    1. Exactly. A few sets of parents complained. Big whoop.
      Obama didn’t even bother to show up in 8 years.
      99% of the boys were thrilled!

  6. Politics is applied conflict resolution and collaborative problem-solving. One of the top tenets of the problem-solver is to avoid ad hominem attacks (“us vs. them”), and to not let a conflict grow through conflation of grievances. Americans can’t afford to botch our national problem-solving process the way we’ve been doing.
    I hope the Boy Scouts add Merit Badges in Collaborative Design and Public Speaking. And, I hope for a next President with much more leadership training.

    1. pbinca – the Boy Scouts had a merit badge in Public Speaking back in the 50s.

  7. Next subjecft of discussion something I alluded to in several areas of the net. No law against two special counsels And that has been called for on the floor of both houses as of today. They made no bones why and who was the target. Up to Sessions no one said the job was easy but the Dream Team of Meuller is doing what besides padding thie payroll with feather merchants.

    1. What a disgusting insensitive comment.

      A lot of Catholics, Jews, Gypsies, etc. all died based upon their religion, etc. They were murdered in concentration camps, gassed and tortured. It made no difference their age or what they believed.

        1. He’s also a way left sociaist fascist but an insult to Queen and Country.,

  8. America has now joined the ranks of those countries that have and have had leaders we all turned to read about to make our selves feel superior. Trump makes Berlusconi look normal. This is the problem when a country elects a king instead of a leader.

    The only good that can come of this fiasco is that Trump gets nailed for all the misdeeds he fears will be uncovered. Nail his sorry a** to the wall. Trump has shamed America.

    1. Expllain how someone who rejected their country, assuming yhou were American to begin with, and holds allegiance to a foreign ideology has the right to say anything about OUR country.

        1. He suffers from more than that based upon what he stated above. His comment is near animalistic.

  9. After everything Obama did for 8 years, the Democrats do not have a right to complain about ANYTHING.
    They need to sit back and shut up, we are driving this bus they are just the passengers and we really dont care if they make the trip or not.

      1. Fish ask yourself that in the mirror and you will have your answer.

        The Left has sought to divide and conquer for so long that yes I DO despise them. They are not Americans. They are scum who want a Civil War. One day, at the way they are going, they will get it. Then they will not even be remotely called Americans. They will be called ‘The enemy’

        1. That has already started. I don’t know about the republicans but the indepependent constitutional centrists as the largest voting block called it a counter revolution. We were I think a bit shocked to find out how well the founders ideal of self governing independent citizens worked when you add internet, wifi, and a few blogs here and there. We were able to mass a large group from various different sectors of the the results showed. Nothing like continuing with that success.

    1. On the flip side, many of we patriotic Americans believe that Barrack HUSSEIN Obama was the greatest President since Harry S. Truman.

      This is to confused mouse

      1. many of we patriotic Americans believe that Barrack HUSSEIN Obama was the greatest President since Harry S. Truman.

        Me too! If it hadn’t been for him, the American people would have remained in their ignorance and apathy of all things government related. He’s done more for civics literacy in this country than HIllsdale College. God bless him and his ego!

        This is to I don’t know how to spell my favorite President’s name Mark M.

  10. “As the uniformed Scouts took part in the opening ceremony, the delegates, seated in the front of the hall, waved their signs and booed.

    Under normal circumstances, jeering at children is the sort of behavior that might get a delegate sanctioned, if not booted from the convention altogether. But anyone who expected the Democratic leadership to scold the Boy Scouts of America bashers is attending the wrong convention.”

  11. As opposed to Obama having DoJ direct settlement money owed to the Federal govt from companies/people being sued/prosecuted to Democrat groups?

  12. I did not see the speech so I don’t know why people are upset. I know without having watched it, however, that whatever Trump said has been amplified and blown up by a group of professional anti-Trump activists and/or media. That’s just reality.

    The Boy Scouts are a private organization. Youth can voluntarily join or quit whenever they choose. For whatever reason or for no reason at all.

    I wonder if the people claiming to be outraged about Trump’s Boy Scout speech were upset that taxpayer funded government employees in government run monopolistic public schools programmed captive children about 6 years old to creepily sing songs and heap praise on President Obama? Unlike the Boy Scouts, where participation is wholly voluntarily, attendance in government run monopolistic schools is compulsory. The children were forced to produce state created agitprop praising Obama. Which is more like the Hitler Youth?

    1. Excellent comparison. The use of the public schools to propagandize should be an offense that starts with stopping all funding and ends with dumping the Department of Education followed by jail time for those running a concenttration camp whose purpose wis to promote a one party system with completel control on behalf of a foreign ideology.

      1. Do you advocate that everyone, at all levels of government, should pledge personal loyalty to Donald Trump and the Republican party, above all other considerations ?

        1. What does that have to do with the subject at hand typical left wing reframing trying to put words in people’s mouths and thank you for that display of the usual stupidity.

        2. What does that have to do with the subject at hand typical left wing reframing trying to put words in people’s mouths and thank you for that display of the usual stupidity. This is to Jay and his sycophant. We don’t count you as real people. Other than in the lose column we don’t count you at all. Now if yiou were a citizen that would be different ….maybe. .

      2. BTW, what sort of propaganda do you assert that public schools are promulgating? I’d be curious for some examples.

        1. I appreciate your attempt, but there’s no substance to their claims. At least here they have a place to vent their inconsequential little furies where real people won’t be impacted.

          This is to jay

          1. and this tio Mark M. Sentence One. personal opinion based on your allegiance to a foreign ideolgy but in the moderate center we did the impacting.

        2. You mut have missed the list but I’m of the opinon that the Department of Education which funds almost everyy secondary and all but two college/university level institutions has done exactly that. What part of th educational system isn’t propaganda but let’s start with the word democracy. Something easy for you to understand. Test Time . Where in the Constitution is that word found?

          But you here that crap day and night and even the Fox reporters are infected.

          There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch and there isn’t any such thing as democracy with one tiny exception in our Representative Constituttional Republic. The exception? At the bare ground below grass roots level democratic prnciples are applied but once a vote is cast for May or or City Council or County Commissioner especially in the states with no recall and control is lost it become a tbest a form of reperesentative democracy but only if the majority of issues are direct vote. And quickly turns into a Representative Constitutinal Republic.

          But go ahead and search and show me. Assuming you can find a copy to read.

          1. Michael, you are providing substance. Jay S. refuses to do so, so we are forced to read his drivel.

          2. I’m still missing just what it is you claim the Department of Education is doing, or doing wrong. Are you saying that Department of Education should never use the term “democracy”? And that by doing so, it is propaganda of some sort?

            1. It’s teaching young people nationwide we are a democracy. We are NOT a democracy not even close. Therefore it’s false propanda in support of the aforementioned or a foreign ideology. If they taught or used the phrases ‘based on democratic principles and a certain level’ they don’t.

              I hit on the Republicans just as hard because of the RINOs but then I believe we will see two new parties one the Sociailist Progressive whatever because they do not approve of a true Democracy it rather interferes with their idea of single party ,single payer government over and controlling citizens. The antifa and BLM activities would be the anathema to the Progressives especially.

              The Republicans minus RINO’s and them replaced by the current moderate centrists would be better served changing their name to Constitutional Republic Party. It would give them something to live up to for a change.

              And the third item would be to ban the use of liberal and conservative back to their real meaning. We see that played out be the Schumer Pelosi faction every day as their well entrenched fortess politic was finally breached by some very liberal action and they are still trying to use conservative political tactics to regain that lost power.

              The two terms are not flexible but they do refer to different factions at different times as they switch places.
              As of now though liberal is a term of contempt from the Constitutionalists and Conservative is a catch all phrase to the left meaning -anyone that disagrees with us. To get a clear understanding read “Don’t See The Elephant.” by Lykoff, George AKA Yoda who is the lefts theoretician of sorts and works under the two main Progressive Secular leaders.

              given time and space one can trace the historical development starting pre Socrates all the way through to today and the main theme I’ve seen depticted in a cartoon of a armored gent with a sword using the blood of his freshly killed opponent and writing with his weapon “The Sword is mightier than The Pen.” Another way is to say He who controls the dictionary contros all.”

              Back to the subject of two new parties it would openly face off the two extremely different political philosophies in an honest face to face match. Assuming the umpire wasn’t Donna Brazile.

              it actually is a winner take all event at the present time but the self proclaimed winners after a 100 plus year revolutionary effort were suddenly met with something called a counter-revolution. Led by many of Fort Bragg’s finest graduates. Poor Hillary she never stood a chance. But in keeping with the oath of office the Republic was turned back over to the civilian authorities How will it fare and how long will it last? As Montessquieu opined ‘Only as long as you can keep it.” That may have been Ben Franklin. or both.

              And it may not be Ballots Not Bullets. with a six word mission paragraph. Nothing is guaranteed

              Stop Enabling
              Take Control
              Make Change.

              Thus ends the lecture for the day but……if you would care to delve deeper their are no charge college level courses available that cover all of the above and much more …with a little Shakespeare and C.S Elliot thrown in for good measure

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