While many people look forward to visits from their local Girl Scouts, wearing badge-covered sashes, vests and smiles, there are some who won’t buy cookies from them this year.
They’re taking a stance against the Do-si-dos, Thin Mints and Samoas, boycotting the all-American organization. And it all started in Waco.
“CookieCott 2014,” as it is formally called by Pro-Life Waco and other pro-life organizations across the country, started in response to Tweets from the official Girl Scouts’ Twitter page at the end of last year.
The Girl Scouts posted the articles “Incredible Ladies of 2013” from the Huffington Post and “Seven Women Who Made A Difference in 2013” from the Washington Post.
These articles on notable women included youth activist Malala Yousafzai; Chief Operating Officer of Facebook and author Sheryl Sandberg; gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis; and Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius. Both Davis and Sebelius are supporters of abortion, making the “endorsement” from the Girl Scouts via Twitter infuriating to many pro-life supporters.
The problem, according to cookiecott.com, is “local Girl Scout councils honor and promote abortion rights advocates and pro-abortion politicians; suggest girls work with organizations that fight for abortion on demand; and invite girls to attend events related to abortion rights advocacy and other controversial issues.”
However, the Girl Scouts never announced a formal endorsement of Davis and has never endorsed any politician.
In fact, the organization’s website shows neutrality. It states it “does not take a position or develop materials on [human sexuality, birth control and abortion]. We feel our role is to help girls develop self-confidence and good decision-making skills that will help them make wise choices in all areas of their lives.”
The CookieCott 2014 is a pointless attempt to push a political agenda on the Girl Scouts of America.
While the Girl Scouts organization is, in fact, involved in advocacy — of women stepping into fields in the sciences, technology and math, and of reducing bullying in schools — it does so by crossing political partisan lines and by staying away from taboo subjects that put young girls in a political crossfire.
While pro-life organizations have every right to protest whomever they please and should stand for what they believe in, it is useless to think that refusing to buy cookies will damage the success of the Girl Scouts of America organization. The boycott is ultimately trying to send a message to the Girl Scouts headquarters and, unfortunately for Pro-Life Waco and other organizations participating in CookieCott 2014, the Girl Scouts will not change because of a few people who refuse to buy their yearly allotment of Tagalongs.
People support the Girl Scouts for what they stand for — empowering young girls with courage and character.
There are enough people who believe in that image of the Girl Scouts and who will continue to buy cookies because of the good the organization does for young girls.
Any boycott of the Girl Scouts, no matter how warranted, will not take down the nearly 102-year-old nonprofit or cause it to change. In fact, Pro-Life Waco might cause the Streisand effect and cause support for the Girl Scouts to increase because of backlash from its boycott.
Whether you are for or against abortion, just know you are buying cookies, a commodity sold like anything else. You are buying cookies from a young girl who probably doesn’t even know about abortion. She knows about making people smile, about working hard and about building character.
She knows about cookies and she knows about being a part of a team. Remember that she is the Girl Scouts of America, much more so than the people in the Girl Scouts headquarters.