“Cookies Support the Transgenders”

At least according to one young girl in California. Recently a video was posted by a young teenager from California who says that she has been a Girl Scout for 8 years and is really upset that the Girl Scouts have a policy in place that welcomes transgender girls (she repeatedly calls them transgender boys) into full inclusion and community with the Girl Scouts. She encourages us to boycott Girl Scout cookies, either by not selling them if we’re a member of Girl Scouts or by not buying them if we’re just part of the cookie loving masses.

Thankfully most of the response I have seen from my friends has been “let’s buy extra cookies this year to support the Girl Scouts and their policy of inclusivity.” That’s great! That is positive activism, that is change through love. There have been the few comments I’ve seen on Facebook calling this girl stupid, calling her a bitch, calling her things that NO parent would want to see their kid called. Names I don’t want to see any kid called, either.

She is a kid. She’s 14 I think, and it’s clear this movie wasn’t totally her idea. The editing is a little too sophisticated, her reading a little too stilted, everything just a little “too” to be completely written, planned, filmed, edited, and posted without adult intervention somewhere in the process. None of that is to say it might not have been her idea, or something that she mentioned at dinner that a parent latched on to. But more than likely she’s a girl who was put up to something by her conservative parents who were upset about the possible inclusion of transgender or gender varient girls in Girl Scouts. That kind of thing CAN sound scary if presented in the wrong way to a young girl (or, frankly, to anybody) and I have no doubt that she does believe what she’s saying.

It’s scary when something is presented to you in a way that makes it sound like something you know and love is changing. If a young teen is told “we’re going to let boys into your Girl Scout troop!” I can see how that could freak a kid out. The problem, of course, being that boys aren’t being allowed into Girl Scout troops. There’s a good chance that this girl has no way of knowing that; if she’s been fed the typical right-wing rhetoric about what transgender means then… yeah, she has it wrong and it probably does sound scary. That rhetoric usually goes something like “unstable men who like to dress up like women so they can use the girl’s bathrooms and possibly hurt girls.”

I have no doubt that this girl was raised in a conservative Christian household; every sign is there. She wears a cross, the video was immediately up on a very Christian-centric website, and even the script she was reading from was very “family values”-centric. Read the terminology they use… all those words are carefully chosen and come from the same place as Focus on the Family, the American Family Association and other innocuous-sounding-but-hateful groups.

I feel bad for this girl. I feel bad that it’s clearly going to be awhile before she has any actual chance to explore the world a little and meet people not in her religious, social, and political demographic. I feel bad that she’s probably getting a lot of hate directed at her right now from liberal folks and that that is just going to enforce the points she has been fed. I feel bad that she was used in this way to push an agenda that she clearly doesn’t know much about. I just feel bad for her.

Let’s keep this boycott-of-the-boycott positive. Let’s buy a ton of cookies and let’s send letters of support to Girl Scouts, thanking them for being inclusive and forward-moving. Let’s not demonize a 14 year old girl for something I have no doubt she’ll regret at some point. She really is just a kid.


7 Comments to ““Cookies Support the Transgenders””

  1. Definitely not her idea… http://www.honestgirlscouts.com – an ultra-conservative anti-feminist organization – is behind the video.

    • Right, I know. I mention the website in my post (not by name because I didn’t actually want to give them more press).

      But they are claiming she just made the video for them without prompting. That it was her idea.

  2. Great points, Andrew.

  3. I saw the video. It made me very sad that such hate can be directed towards a group of people.

    Also. I disliked how snobby she was. End. Quote.

    Definitely her parents doing. 😦

  4. Making great points, as usual. =)
    Most of my friends have had the boycott-the-boycott reaction, luckily, and haven’t jumped to the name-calling.

  5. I stumbled across your blog through OWL’s Facebook link to it. Thanks for your thoughts on this issue; I’m especially glad to see someone reminding us all that she’s still a child and that calling her names is inappropriate. I work for the Girl Scouts (and am a future UU seminarian), so this issue really resonates with me. Thanks all, for the positive “buy more cookies” response and for supporting all Girl Scouts!

  6. I’m going to totally buy cookies next time I see them…although I’ll have to give the cookies away as I can’t eat gluten. I won’t blame the girl, and even if it was her idea I’m sure she regretted posting such hate.

    I was somewhat on the same end of the boys in the GS’s. I was a Pioneer Girl when I was a pre-teen. I wanted to join the Boy Scouts but I wasn’t allowed because they labeled me a female. PG’s were the closest thing to GS’s in my area so I was forced into that. I could have been outdoors climbing trees and studying nature, instead I was in a dark mouldy church basement tasked with making gods eyes and candles that were thrown out anyways.

    The same thing somewhat happened again when I was in my mid-teen years. I joined a girls hockey team, the first in my area. It was very controversial. Alas I was one year older than everyone else and played more like a boy in skill. They didn’t want skill, they wanted cute girls with sticks. I was asked to not come back or instead join a Ringette team 80 miles away. Distance ignored, that’s like telling me to play a completely different sport, wth?

    I was so upset I threw down my hockey stick and gave up right there. Unfortunately that’s what they wanted. I should have protested but I had other life-changing things to worry about at the time so I dropped the issue. And squelched my heart. I regret that action, but that’s the past.

    Your topic (and others here) has encouraged me not only to buy cookies in support, but to become more open with my community. I’m not really the type of person who can go out and make speeches, but I can at least not be so quiet about transgender issues, and the silly boy/girl binary rule.

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