Thursday, March 1, 2018

Time for the Boy Scouts to break up with the NRA

 An open letter to Chief Executive of the Boy Scouts of America, Mr. Michael B. Surbaugh

Dear Mr. Surbaugh,

I am an Eagle Scout and a Cub Scout Leader. I credit the Boy Scouts of America with helping set my moral compass and I'm an enthusiastic participant, helping mentor my son and other young people through Scouting.

As a youth member, I enthusiastically participated in the BSA's shooting sports program, earning my Rifle Shooting and Archery merit badges. While an active youth member of the Order of the Arrow, I helped our Lodge Chief run a black powder range at our Council's annual Mountain Man Rendevouz. I enjoyed working with the Shooting Sports staff when I worked as a teenager at Camp Oljato in Northern California. The BSA did an excellent job of teaching me about firearm safety and proficiency. I look forward to helping my son learn how to safely use firearms in his Scouting career.

I understand that the Boy Scouts of America has long partnered with the National Rifle Association as part of BSA's shooting sports program. This was likely a fruitful partnership when the NRA was merely a firearm safety organization. This partnership is no longer in the interest of the Boy Scouts of America nor the youth we serve. In recent years, the National Rifle Association has become a political advocacy group, lobbying for radical political change that is putting the lives of children at tremendous risk.

I do not want the Scouting organization that I love so much to become tarnished by an unfortunate association with the NRA. Likewise, I don't want the NRA to benefit from the BSA's good reputation.

When I was a Scout, I learned that the right choice was often the hard choice. I know that it will not be easy to disentangle the BSA from the NRA, but the time has come. Please take immediate steps to separate the BSA from the NRA and create new programs for the shooting sports program.

Yours in Service,
Mike Ryan Simonovich
Eagle Scout '96
Order of the Arrow Vigil Honor '96

#####UPDATE 3/1/2018 13:30#####
 If you agree with my sentiment, please sign this petition:

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