in the year 2020 Election
for the Office of President of the United States
a/k/a The National Campaign for Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness

The National Campaign

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     Education at Issue

When I was just a grade school student, I was in Cub Scouts and later in the Boy Scouts. My friends' fathers, who had been in the Armed Services during World War II, were volunteering as troop leaders. Their wives were Den Mothers in the Cub Scouts and the hottest thing for the scouts was to earn as many merit badges as possible. The Scout Hand Book outlined ways to demonstrate competence in the various disciplines for which Merit Badges were awarded.

There were probably millions of boys who followed the Merit Badge Outlines and deserved the recognition and bragging rights that followed. But, there were others who received their badges but who knew nothing about the area of concern. Nothing. They or their Dads glued some knotted ropes to a board and pasted on some labels so the young Scout would get to have his Mom sew a Knot Tying Badge on his Merit Badge Sash. There were sashes with tons of badges everywhere; but so many of them meant nothing in terms of what the sash wearers knew compared to what kind of minimal efforts they could go to have the troop leaders sign their Badge Approval forms. And then there would be a candle light ceremony at which public recognition was made for each of the badges they were getting.

These folks must have really believed that what they were doing was getting them some where. If the fathers or their sons were asked anthing about their merit badge topics they would be hard pressed to offer any kind of authoritative answers about the subject. They could not tie knot number one. Nor were they able to explain why any particular knot would be appropriate for a particular use and how it functioned to make it serve so well. How did these fellows ever pass the meit badge tests in the first place? Our best guess is that the tests were really dumbed down to accomodate the insideers or the presentation of a report or a display would be allowed to stand in lieu of any direct proof that the scout knew the material.