When Good Cub Scouts Go “Bad”
It seems that in this day and age, no one is safe when speaking their mind. Not even an eleven-year-old Cub Scout. On October 9th, during one of their weekly meetings, eleven-year-old Ames Mayfield posed a series of questions to Colorado State Senator, Vicki Marble, during a Q&A session. It started out innocently enough. Until Ames began asking Marble the tougher questions. Scout leaders deemed his questions “too politically charged”, and told Ames he needed to find a new group.
Ames asked Marble about gun control and votes to repeal background checks on private gun sales. He asked her about support for carrying without a permit. He even asked her about the struggles of the Las Vegas shooting victims in affording their healthcare to pay for their injuries. The little boy told Marble he was “shocked” that she would co-sponsor a bill in which violent offenders would be allowed to continue owning a gun. “Why on Earth would you want somebody who beats their wife to have access to a gun?”, he asked.
Little Ames then proceeded to tell Marble that there was something “wrong” with this country when Republicans believe it is a “right” to own a gun, but considered it a “privilege” to have health care. Amen little man. When this country considers gun ownership a right but health care a privilege, something is very wrong indeed. Health care is a fundamental right. Gun ownership is a privilege. There are people on this planet who should not own a gun. Domestic violence offenders are just a few of them.
The highlight of this whole exchange between Mayfield and Marble was when Mayfield addressed the comments Marble made back in 2013 regarding African Americans, saying it was their fault for their health problems. Ames told the senator he was “astonished” that she was blaming them for poor health and poverty. Her reasoning? They eat too much barbecue and fried chicken. Seriously?
Ames’ mother recorded the exchange between Marble and her son, posting it on YouTube. Already, the video has received nearly 100,000 views.
When watching the video, Ames is direct but polite in his line of questioning. He never once raises his voice, and he speaks to her in a respectful manner, which is something his mother told him to do when asking these questions. Instead of praising Ames for being so proactive and respectful in his questioning, Scout leaders told him five days after the meeting that he needed to find a new group. He was no longer welcome. Marble said she doesn’t blame Ames for asking those questions, citing that there were “elements of manipulation” by his mother, which Mayfield strongly denies.
Honestly, I don’t know which one I find more alarming. Here is this little boy who is so politically aware of what’s going in his world and is asking the questions that everyone is demanding answers to. He should be outside playing and being a kid that does kid things, like building a fort, or playing in the dirt. Eating bugs, even, if he so chooses. Instead, he’s voicing his opinion and seeking answers to find out what is wrong with the world we live in. He’s asking where her values are, where her morals are. And he has every right to. We all do. As American citizens, it is our right to voice an opinion when our life, our liberty, and our pursuit of happiness is being threatened.
The only difference is, this little boy is just that. A little boy. He should not be aware that things like this are happening. All he should know is that yes, there are bad people in this world, and unfortunately, there are people who don’t do their jobs to stop it.
It’s clear in watching Ames’ interview with Next 9News that he is mature for his age. You can also see that he although he knows why he was asked to leave, he still doesn’t quite comprehend it.
I can say without a doubt I am ashamed and disappointed. Not in Ames, but in his Cub Scout leaders. They should be proud that he conducted himself in a respectful manner, and that he is so politically aware.
In looking at the Cub Scout rule book, I came across an interesting paragraph on page 3, which is a policy concerning political question.
Before we kick any more Cubs out for expressing their opinions, perhaps we should read our manuals first. We should also praise little boys (and girls) like Ames for expressing their opinions. We shouldn’t kick them out of their groups for asking the tough questions. Instead, we should be asking ourselves why we’re not the ones asking them and politicians should be wondering what it means when children are becoming so politically aware.